The well known joke is that Minnesota has two seasons: winter and road construction. And given what felt like a never ending winter, there might be some truth to that!
I'm not a huge fan of raod construction season. While I'll happily take the warmer weather, hitting detours or sitting in stop and go single lane traffic is not my idea of fun. But, more than I dislike road construction, I dislike roads with pot holes that could eat my car, so in order to avoid playing frogger with the pot holes, road construction remains a nessessary yearly event. And I have to say, there is something wonderful about driving over a brand new perfectly smooth stretch of pavement. It seems we've JUST left the cold and dreary days of winter behind and already orange cones are popping up everywhere, including the part of Central Avenue directly in front of our studios.
Road construction can also be dangerous, both for the people working like crazy (and usually not with much thanks) to get the roads into tip tip shape and for those passing through. With Memorial Day weekend just around the corner and a lot of people hitting the road, I thought this might be a great time to cover a few tips to help keep you and the folks repairing the roads safe all summer long!
- Avoid hot zones by knowing where the construction is before you get in the car. 511mn.org is a great resource, showing exactly where the work is being done.
- Take back roads when possible, or map your path beforehand
- Allow extra time to get to your destination
- Minimize distractions, avoid the cell phone, eating, ect
- Get into the correct lane early and merge cautiously
- Watch for break lights
- Be aware of suprise speed changes
- Pay attention to the posted signs
- Practice patience
- Follow instructions from flaggers
- Give extra space between vehicles
- Turn on headlights to be more visible
- Be alert to your surroundings
- Slow down. Fines are often double in work zones
- Buckle up
Have a safe and fun Memorial Day weekend and summer!