WICHITA COUNTY, TX (KAUZ) - Crashes in work zones resulted in 181 deaths in Texas last year. Seven fatalities were construction workers.
The Texas Department of Transportation Public Information Officer Adèle Lewis said there was 25,000 work zone crashes in 2017
"These people are our here working. This is their office and they've got no protection out here," Lewis said. "So, your vehicle driving 75 mph is going to dissipate them, their vehicle and everything around them. It's very, very dangerous for them."
Move over or slow down.
The law originally passed in 2003 states the driver must vacate the lane closest to the applicable vehicles stopped, or slow down 20 mph below the speed limit.
A car speeds by at 75 mph and, inches separate, Texas Highway Patrol Sergeant with media and safety education, Dan Buesing from the dangerous speeds while he has a motorist pulled over.
"A couple of different things go through your mind," Trooper Buesing said. "You're trying to keep yourself safe along with the car you pull over too."
If the speed limit is 75, slow down to 55, or risk being pulled over.
Speed limits under 25 mph only require a 5 mph slow down.
"I've had a few close cases myself on the side of the road. That's why the rumble strips are pretty helpful," Trooper Buesing said. "You can kind of hear cars maybe being a little distracted and leaving their lane of traffic."
It's not just law enforcement. Motorists must also move over for, fire, ems, tow trucks, and TxDot.
Data from the Texas Department of Public Safety indicates at least 10,650 warnings and citations issued last year, but there are still violators every day. Trooper Buesing said they are putting together a task force to stop the dangerous problem.
If caught a fine for breaking the law could cost $200 - $2000.