Safety primary topic at press conference dealing with highway construction zones

SIOUX FALLS, S.D.(KELO)- More than 800 people die in highway construction zones every year.

With that in mind, state and local officials are joining with contractors is asking you to do your part for public safety.

Craig Smith, the director of Operations for the state department of transportation, recalls a near miss he witnessed early in his career.

Speed and distracted or impaired driving are the main causes of construction zone accidents.

Officials are asking you to slow down and pay attention.

35-thousand vehicles a day…through a major construction zone.

That’s the reality of the I-29 and 41st street project in Sioux Falls.

Colonel Rick Miller of the South Dakota Highway Patrol says everyone would be safer if they just imagined they saw a patrol car.

More than 800 people are killed in construction zone accidents every year…including 2 to 3 in South Dakota.