According to the Ohio Department of Transportation, the state saw more than 6,553 work zone crashes in 2019, and 3,145 work zone-related crashes in 2020.

To help reduce accidents and to protect the lives of workers, ODOT is collaborating with the Ohio State Highway to make work safer.

The Ohio State Patrol will join forces with Ohio State Highway Patrol Aviation Section. It will begin targeting traffic violations in work zones in nearly a dozen locations around the state, watching for speed, following too closely to other vehicles, and failure to move over. The locations have been selected by the number of crashes, speeding issues, and by the barriers used to separate workers from the traffic.

OSHP routinely enforces speed violations from the air across the state. Speed is measured by a pilot who times how long it takes a vehicle to pass between a series of lines painted on the roadway. The violation time and speed information are then relayed to a trooper on the ground who makes the traffic stop.

"This year, we have seen an alarming spike in crashes on our roadways and construction zones," said Governor Mike DeWine. "It's important that we implement partnerships and technology like this to decrease roadway crashes, ensuring both motorists and construction employees make it home safely."

"Driving requires your full attention, especially in work zones. All the safety measures we put into place don't matter if drivers never see them because their attention is elsewhere," said ODOT Director Jack Marchbanks.

The pilot project will be evaluated and, based on results, could be expanded next year.