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Workplace injuries: Illinois motorists often endanger flaggers

While driving through Illinois and other states, it is common to see construction zones along the highway at any time of the day or night, especially during the summer. Road work often creates traffic jams, which causes some motorists to become impatient and angry. When these drivers try to take matters into their own hands to get around the traffic, instead of following the directions of the flaggers posted at the sites, it can result in workplace injuries. 

Three such incidents have occurred in a matter of weeks in one particular state. Two flaggers working at separate construction sites survived their injuries, although one was listed in serious condition. Sadly, a third incident ended in a fatality.  

That situation also involved a flagger and a 76-year-old motorist who may have been intoxicated at the time. The driver reportedly hit another vehicle, then ran into the worker who was posted there to try to keep workers and motorists safe. The flagger initially survived the impact of the collision but died at the scene soon afterward.  

A spokesman for the Oregon Department of Transportation, where the incidents took place, said impatient motorists pose great risks to road workers, with more than 500 reported accidents per year. To help Illinois construction workers avoid workplace injuries, motorists are obligated to adhere to all posted traffic signs, regulations and any manual directions being given by posted flaggers at a particular site. Injured workers may encounter challenges when claiming compensation benefits following such accidents; if so, an experienced workers' comp attorney can provide support.

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