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Work Zone Safety

Program Introduction

On any given day, there are more than 500 active work zones in the state of Oregon, and they operate day and night.  The primary purpose of the work zone safety program is to reduce the fatal and serious injury traffic crashes in all roadway and utility work zones.  This is achieved through a comprehensive program, which includes the four E's of transportation safety:  engineering, enforcement, education and emergency medical services.
Engineering: Work zones often narrow the travel lanes and alter the road surface, creating temporary changes to the roadway.

The work zone safety program works with the
Traffic Control Plans Unit of ODOT to provide work zone setup resources to contractors, municipalities, utilities and other partners to help ensure the safety of all road users, as well as workers.
Enforcement: The work zone program partners with enforcement agencies around the state to conduct stepped up enforcement and extra patrol presence in work zone areas.
Education: The program includes ongoing public information campaigns to educate Oregon drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists about unique characteristics of work zones and the steep fines associated with work zone infractions.  The program also provides work zone safety education materials for work zone workers.
Emergency medical services: Work zone project managers coordinate with first responder agencies to make sure that road improvement activity does not interfere with timely delivery of
emergency medical services – in the work zone itself or elsewhere.
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Program Manager

Phone Number: 503 986-4195
FAX: 503 986-3143
ODOT - Transportation Safety Division - MS 3
4040 Fairview Industrial Drive SE
Salem, OR 97302-1142
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Work Zone Facts at a Glance

  • Work zone crashes are often more severe than other types of crashes.
  • Most work zone crashes are caused by drivers not paying attention.
  • Speeding - or driving too fast for conditions - is the second leading cause of work zone crashes.
  • More than 40% of work zone crashes happen in the transition zone prior to the work area.
  • Drivers and passengers are more likely to be injured or killed than on-site workers.
  • Fines in work zones are double 24/7 whether workers are present or not. 

Work Zone Fact Sheet 2014

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Research and Statistics

2010 Photo Radar Research Report

Oregon Crash and Severity by County 2009-2013 Motor Vehicle Traffic Crashes Involving Work Zones

Oregon Work Zone Crashes, by County, Road Jurisdiction, Injury and Crash Severity 2006-2010

Oregon and National Work Zone Safety Statistics 2015


Work Zone Charts
Click thumbnail images to enlarge

Top Age Groups -
All Work Zone Crashes 2006-2010
All Work Zone Crashes 2006-2010

Top Age Groups -
Injury Work Zone Crashes 2006-2010
Injury Work Zone Crashes 2006-2010

Top Age Groups -
Fatal Work Zone Crashes 2006 - 2010
Fatal Work Zone Crashes 2006-2010 
Male/Female Drivers -
Work Zone Crashes Top Error Codes
Work Zone Crashes Top Error Codes 
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Public Outreach and Education Materials

May is Transportation Safety Awareness Month.  It is also the month that kicks off the road construction season in Oregon.  In addition to ongoing federally-funded major roadway improvement projects, there is an increase in state and county road projects, utility work and other infrastructure improvement projects.  

When you start seeing road construction signs, cones and barrels along Oregon's streets, roads and highways - that's your clue to slow down, pay attention to the car ahead, avoid distractions such as using a phone, and keep a sharp eye out for workers in the work zone.

Work Zone 2014 Information and Materials
Public Service Campaigns


Life in the Work Zone (wmv)

Elevator (mov)

Radio PSAs

Don't Be Sneaky (mp3)

For Your Sake (mp3)

Sam the Safety Cone

Santino the Safety Cone - Spanish (mp3)

To request broadcast quality radio or TV PSAs, please contact the Work Zone Safety Program Manager.

Billboard/Web Banner

              (Items above are available as Billboard PSAs and Web Banners)



         (Handout)                   (Available as Poster PSA)                 (Brochure)        


ODOT-Transportation Safety Division offers dozens of free booklets, brochures, posters, stickers, and other materials designed to promote safe driving, biking and walking. These materials may be ordered directly from the ODOT Storeroom.  Free Publications Catalogue

ODOT Storeroom
455 Airport Road, Building K
Salem, OR 97301
Order Desk FAX: 503 986-2801
Telephone: 503 986-2793
To request an order form, call the number listed above.
Do not submit photocopies of the order form. Each order form is marked with an inventory control number and must not be duplicated.
There are no costs for ordering these public education and information items if the request is within the program limit amount. For larger orders, a special printing can be arranged at cost. The listings in this brochure are updated as materials are added and deleted.

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What's New

Latest Work Zone Safety News Releases - 2014

New video illustrates danger of highway construction jobs
The Employee Safety Unit of ODOT - in partnership with the Photo and Video Services Unit - recently produced a new safety training video "It can be a dangerous job" about a near-miss incident that took place on I-5 in Jackson County. We hope this video stimulates conversations about work zone safety among road construction and utility crews, and impresses the importance of respecting the zone on the driving public.
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Flagger Training/Certification

ODOT has designated the Chemeketa Community College Center for Business and Industry as the administrator of flagger curriculum, materials and Flagger Certification Cards.  To find out about flagger certification classes in your area, click on the link below.

Oregon Flagger Training Certification Program

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Work Zone Setup Resources

Properly set-up work zones are essential to worker and driver safety.  Make sure you are familiar with state and federal requirements for setting up your work zone before you start.

Traffic Control Devices:  Visit the Traffic Control Plans Unit page for the most up-to-date manuals and handbooks.

Device Quality Standards:  Use the ATSSA "Quality Guidelines for Temporary Traffic Control Devices and Features" handbook to assess the quality of your devices.

Traffic Analysis:  Refer to the ODOT Work Zone Traffic Analysis Tool Users' Guide to optimize lane closures and minimize delays.

Worker Safety:  Before you start, check the Oregon OSHA Traffic Control section for the latest safety guidelines.

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