109 barrels on I-640 to honor TDOT workers killed while on duty

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The Tennessee Department of Transportation is joining states across the nation to remind drivers of the dangers of speeding through work zones during National Work Zone Awareness Week.

“Speeding through work zones can have deadly consequences for our TDOT and contract workers, as well as motorists,” says TDOT Commissioner John Schroer. “Slower speeds provide more reaction time to the often changing conditions in work zones. We want to remind all drivers to exercise caution and patience when driving through construction areas so that everyone can make it home safe.”

From April 7-11, work zone safety messages will be displayed on TDOT’s overhead signs on interstates in Memphis, Nashville, Chattanooga, and Knoxville.

Several buildings will be lit in orange, including TDOT’s four regional offices and the State Capitol.

There will also be special displays featuring 109 construction barrels to honor the 109 TDOT workers lost in the line of duty since 1948. The display in Knoxville is on Interstate 640, near Millertown Pike.

"Everyone needs to know that the people working are part of a family. They've got children, moms and dads, and daughters and sons. They have families to go home to. So, when you're driving through a work zone, you need to think about that," says Schroer.

Last year in Tennessee, 14 people died in work zone crashes, with 11 of those being drivers or passengers.

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