'Hashtag: Safezone' aims to reduce crashes

Published on Tuesday, 8 April 2014 09:11 - Written by

(MCT) -- Anderson County Sheriff's Office has advice for motorists: If you're going to speed, don't do it in a work zone.

Anderson County Sheriff's Office and Texas Department of Transportation Tyler District are implementing a new program called " Hashtag: Safezone " aimed at reducing crashes and fatalities in work zones.

TxDOT and law enforcement agencies throughout Tyler District will use social media, particularly Twitter, to announce locations of upcoming or active work zones.

When the hashtag "#safezone" is added to the tweet, it means there is a strong possibility of a patrol car monitoring that work zone.

"Speed and distraction are the two most common causes for work zone crashes," TxDOT public information officer Larry Krantz said. "We're grateful to Anderson County Sheriff's Office for their willingness to help keep our workers safe as they do their jobs."

And it's not only the workers who need protecting. Four out of every five people killed in work zones are either drivers or passengers passing through the work zone.

"We're hoping that by using Twitter and other social media outlets, the word will spread quickly not only about where we'll be working, but where motorists might also encounter a law enforcement officer monitoring the work," Krantz said. "I'd love it if that helped change driver behavior in and around the work zone, but I'd settle for this message helping motorists decide to seek an alternate route."

Find TxDOT's Tyler District Twitter feed here: http://www.twitter.com/#!/TYLPIO.