TDOT employee works to raise work zone awareness

TDOT employee works to raise work zone awareness (Image 1)

On Monday, the Tennessee Department of Transportation kicked off Work Zone Awareness week.

The effort works to improve safety in Tennessee's interstate and highway construction and maintenance work zones.

“Certainly a little bit of effort can go a long way for the safety of the workers,” TDOT Region 3 Director Winston Gaffron told Nashville's News 2.

TDOT Safety Coordinator Jimmy McNeece added, “What I want to tell the people is be careful. Watch what you're doing in work zone areas stay off your cell phones, quit texting, slow down.”

McNeece told Nashville's News 2 to him, the safety campaign is personal.

McNeece's son, James, is one of 108 TDOT employees killed on the job since 1949.

“My son worked for TDOT for about three years. He was working for the survey crew in Robertson County in a work zone area,” said McNeece.

James McNeece was killed in 2000.

“At that time a lady came down the road not paying any attention to him, going fast and hit right over my son,” McNeece said.

James McNeece's name is now engraved on a new plaque honoring TDOT workers who died while working.

In honor of the weeklong event, the State Capitol was lit orange on Monday night.

TDOT also plans to post safety messages on the overhead interstate signs throughout the week and encourages drivers not to barrel through work zones.

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