As part of this campaign, Caltrans will activate its electronic highway message signs in active construction and maintenance work zones around the state to display the following warning:
CHP ON PATROL
“This is about protecting the safety of California’s motorists and the men and women working along the state’s highways,” said Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty. “Using our highway message signs and increasing CHP’s presence around these areas, we are reminding California drivers to do their part in reducing collisions and hazardous conditions in these work zones.”
Currently, there are more than 700 active projects underway worth more than $11 billion.
As part of the maximum enforcement effort, the CHP will have their patrol officers increase the time spent patrolling active work zones in their areas, while also conducting proactive enforcement efforts. Drivers should be aware that any traffic infraction committed within a construction work zone will result in a doubling of the usual fine.
“Through a combination of education and enforcement our goal is to provide the safest environment possible for highway workers,” said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow. “Motorists are reminded to reduce their speed, watch for highway workers and safely move over a lane when passing work crews. These simple actions can mean the difference between life and death.”
“Without a doubt, working on a highway construction project is a dangerous job,” said Assemblymember Bonnie Lowenthal (D-Long Beach), Chair of the Assembly Committee on Transportation. “For the millions of drivers on our roads each day, these signs will get the message across loud and clear – a little extra vigilance can save a life.”
“Highway workers are doing their part to make our roadways safe and reliable for everyone,” said Director Rhonda Craft of the Office of Traffic Safety. “We need to do our part by slowing down and using extra caution around active work zones.”
The enforcement message will be displayed July 28-August 1 and September 23-25 on any electronic highway message signs within five miles in advance of active construction work zones. The enforcement message will be activated when there are no critical emergency or traffic safety messages or Amber Alerts.■