Highway Construction Flagman Dies After Being Struck by a Pickup TruckAbstract:
An 18-year-old male (victim) highway construction flagman died as a result of traumatic injuries received after being struck by a pickup truck. A highway crew was milling the surface of a bridge approach area in preparation for re-surfacing. The work was being done at night during minimum traffic hours. The victim, outfitted in full reflective vest, pants, and hard hat, was directing traffic at one end of the bridge. The road was well marked with traffic cones and signs and the entire bridge was well lit with street lights. In addition, at the time of the incident he was standing under portable flood lights and rotary beacons were situated near him. He was standing in the opposing traffic lane close to the center line, facing on-coming traffic. A pickup truck, traveling 55-60 miles per hour (mph) and in the wrong lane, struck him head on and carried him approximately 200 feet. He died almost immediately from multiple traumatic injuries. MN FACE investigators concluded that , in order to prevent similar occurrences, the following guidelines should be followed:
reduce the posted traffic speed limit through highway construction and work zones; and
post law enforcement vehicles and/or personnel near and before highway construction zones to capture drivers’ attention and ensure that traffic slows before entering the work area.