Work Zone Safety
On average, there are more than 7,000 work zone motor vehicle crashes in Illinois every year. The 19 fatal crashes in 2012 involved fatalities to 13 drivers, three passengers and three pedestrians - two of which were workers.
In Work Zones
No cell phones in work zones.
Distracted driving laws prohibit the use of all hand-held electronic devices in construction work zones.
Minimize distractions and stay alert.
Watch for signs posted a minimum of one-half mile in advance of a construction zone.
Understand where a work zone begins and ends and that reduced speeds are required.
Reduce your speed to the posted speed limit, generally 45 mph. Find out where construction is on the Tollway or call 800-TOLL-FYI.
SLOW DOWN whether or not workers are present.
Obey construction work zone speed limits (generally 45 mph) at all times, 24/7, even when workers are not present.
One of the most common crashes in a work zone is a rear-end collision. In addition, traffic in work zones makes sudden stops.
Expect the unexpected.
Traffic patterns may change often in construction zones. Workers also work on or near the live roadway.
Watch for workers.
Keep an eye out for the safety colors of orange and florescent lime-green that all workers wear when on the roads.
Penalties for hitting a worker are severe.
The minimum penalty for speeding in a work zone is $375, regardless of whether there are workers present or not. The Move Over Law requires motorists to slow down or move to the next available lane when approaching emergency or highway maintainer vehicles with flashing lights.
If you must pull over or are in an accident in the work zone, stay in your vehicle.
Call *999 on your cell phone for non-emergency roadway assistance.
At Toll Plazas
Never stop in an I-PASS Only lane.
It is unsafe to stop in an I-PASS lane. If you find yourself unintentionally in an I-PASS lane, continue through the lane; do not stop. Visit the Tollway's website within 7 days to pay the missed toll and avoid violations.
Slow down when entering and exiting toll plazas.
Obey the speed limit and stop, as required, in cash and unmanned ramp lanes. Be alert for slower moving traffic and allow time to decelerate. A 45 mph speed limit begins approximately one-half mile from most toll plazas. In rural areas where the speed limit is 65 mph, the speed limit is reduced to 55 mph about two miles in advance of a plaza. Drivers should not accelerate too quickly upon exiting toll plazas as multiple lanes merge into a reduced number of lanes.
Stay in your lane when entering and exiting toll plazas.
Solid lines indicate that it is illegal to change lanes. Solid lines approaching and departing the toll plazas prompt motorists to select a lane sooner and prevent erratic lane changing. Pay attention to overhead signs and pavement markings when approaching a plaza and stay in the lane you choose. Switching lanes close to a toll plaza is unsafe.
Remember, ramp plazas have I-PASS Only lanes.
Most ramp toll plazas have I-PASS Only lanes. I-PASS users do not have to stop in I-PASS Only lanes. The speed limit for I-PASS Only lanes on ramps is 15 mph. All cars in the cash lanes must stop, as required by law.