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Road Commission said drivers are causing trouble in Grand Blanc Township work zones

Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 4:26 PM EDT
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GRAND BLANC TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WJRT) - Despite the many construction zone signs, drivers in Grand Blanc Township continue to enter work zones, causing dangerous situations for themselves and workers.

“There was a vehicle with a citizen driving that entered the work zone, as he entered he was trying to get through all the legs of the roundabout but they were closed. As he was speeding through the construction zone to exit, his vehicle clipped the backhoe and actually ripped of his mirror,” said

Genesee County Road Commission said that happened on Friday in the round about work zone at Embury and Grand Blanc Roads

They said that this isn’t the first time, the road commission said they’ve had issues with people driving into construction zones, in fact they said it’s only getting worse.

When approaching a construction zone, drivers see signs indicating that they are getting close. The state of Michigan has regulations determining exactly, how high they have to be, their color and how far apart they have to be spaced.

All of this, and still, the Genesee County Road Commission said that this year they’ve seen more drivers going into construction zones than ever before.

The question is why? Are they not seeing the signs or just ignoring them?

“There’s a reason they’re orange and black, they’re bright and trying to get your attention,” said Engineering Construction Manager Gerrad Godley.

Yet, Godley said, they’re not grabbing everyone’s attention.

“They’re ending up in the middle of a construction zone and then when they get there, they’re telling us they didn’t see any signs,” he said.

Godley said that many times, its distracted driving putting people in places they shouldn’t be.

“They’re so distracted with every day life and I’ve seen a lot of people that are driving one-handed with a cell phone in their hand. They cant process everything when they have so many things going on,” said Godley.

Ending up in a work zone isn’t just dangerous for the crews, but even more dangerous for the driver.

“In the scheme of things, they’re working in closed conditions. So they’re swinging excavators around, heavy equipment-- you have loaders that are driving through. They’re not looking for small cars and civilian pick-ups or vehicles that are coming through the construction zone,” he said.

If drivers do enter a closed construction zone, they can be ticketed or fined. If a driver injures or hurts a worker, they can also face jail time.

The Genesee County Road Commission said that they’ve also seen many people trying to use their phone’s GPS systems trying to navigate the area.

Godley said that even if the system is showing an area is open, if a driver comes to a road closed sign, that means the road is still closed.

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