SASKATOON, SASK. - With the summer construction season in full swing, the City of Saskatoon is reminding drivers, people on bikes and pedestrians about work zone safety.
Now in its fourth year, the Respect Work Zones campaign focuses on respecting work zones and workers.
"We're continually doing our best to make sure that our work zones and workers are always safe," says Angela Gardiner, acting general manager of transportation and utilities, in a statement. "We rely on the participation of residents to obey signage, watch for workers and always pay attention."
Gardiner says as the city completes night work to limit disruption to commuters, drivers are asked to watch for speed reductions around work zones.
"Be aware of work happening at night," she says.
Drivers can expect night work to happen on priority streets from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. throughout the summer and should watch for reflective cones, delineator posts and flashing lights.
The most common type of work zones are those around construction and roadway projects, but there are other work zones such as mobile work zones for line painting, parks maintenance and even drop-off zones at the landfill.
"Respecting our different types of work zones also means respecting our workers at their place of business – these locations are their offices," says Gardiner. "We want to keep our message of respect in the workplace front and centre."
Gardiner stresses, at times, construction work may appear halted or complete, but construction signs and barriers are kept in place where work zones are potentially hazardous to residents or to protect construction work and materials while they set or cure. It's imperative to never enter a work zone or move past signs even if it appears complete or inactive. There are serious safety risks in doing so, as well as the risk of vehicle damage.
The Respect Work Zones campaign supports the City Council Strategic Priority (2016-2020 Term) of Transportation. This year, through the Building Better Roads program, city council invested $61 million to build, maintain and repair sidewalks and roadways in local neighbourhoods in addition to other projects around the city.