- The Associated General Contractors of America launched a targeted mobile advertising campaign to promote safe driving in highway work zones, in response to a recent AGC survey that found that 54% of highway contractors reported car crashes in their work zones during the past year, according to a statement from the group.
- The initiative uses targeted advertisement technology to reach drivers who regularly pass through certain work zones and who own smartphones, AGC said. Ads with work zone safety messages are displayed when these individuals open web browsers and applications with ads on their mobile phones. AGC said that more than 1.5 million motorists saw a campaign ad during the first three weeks of May.
- AGC surveyed more than 550 highway contractors throughout April and May, 48% of whom said motor vehicle operators or passengers were injured in work zone crashes during the past 12 months. Of those crashes, 24% involved a driver or passenger fatality, 25% caused an injury to a construction worker and 3% killed a construction worker, the survey found. Slightly more than half of respondents (53%) said crashes caused highway project delays.
According to the most recent work zone safety statistics from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration, a work zone crash occurs once every 5.4 minutes and causes at least one fatality a week, on average. In addition, the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that 1,571 construction workers lost their lives at road project sites from 2003 to 2015.
When AGC conducted the Highway Work Zone Safety Survey last year, 44% of highway contractors reported vehicle crashes on their projects. Following the results of the survey, the association aired a radio ad campaign in dozens of cities, warning that speeding, texting and distracted driving in work zones isn’t worth the “nightmare” of killing a construction worker.
When an even greater number of respondents to this year’s survey — 55% — reported vehicle crashes in their work zones, the AGC launched a more targeted, technology-driven safety campaign. The mobile ads, which debuted in Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Birmingham, Alabama and Evansville, Indiana, are visible to drivers who tend to pass highway projects in these areas. Using location data gathered from mobile devices, the ad campaign makes safety tips visible to the drivers most likely to benefit.