Getting every Laborer home safely every day is the top priority for the Ohio Laborers’ District Council. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen. Sadly In 2020 alone, the Ohio Laborers lost 5 members due to work site accidents in addition to countless others who were injured while working on the job. But recognizing the dangers of being a Union Laborer is not enough, so what are we doing to improve your safety on the job? We are educating – the public, politicians, and ourselves.
We all know Laboring can be hazardous, but hearing a real life story form a work zone accident survivor really hits home. On this month’s Ohio Laborers Union & You podcast, we talked with Mr. Scott Higgins from Local 860 in Cleveland, about his work zone accident and how it has impacted him, his career, and his family. Listen Here.
Ohio has over 8 million licensed drivers and reaching all of them with our message to drive safely in work zones is a tall task. But if we are not trying, we have already failed. We at Ohio Laborers’ District Council (OHLDC) and our team at Ohio LECET have used a multi-pronged approach the last few years to reach as many people as possible with this important message.
We teamed up with ODOT, Ohio State Troopers, and Local Unions to hold public awareness events across the state to help educate the public on the dangers of distracted driving and the importance of adhering to the “Slow Down, Move Over Law.” These events have been held at County Fairs, bustling rest stops, job sites, and virtually on Facebook and YouTube (with over 3,000 viewers). The multi-media marketing campaign also includes Public Service Announcements on radio and television stations across the state and billboards like the ones below. And if you watch a Cincinnati Reds’ or Cleveland Indians’ game, chances are you’ll see one of these commercial promoting safe driving in work zones.
Regardless of how we get the message out, we promise to continue educating and reminding motorists to be vigilant in driving safely through your construction zones. This campaign is priority for us because one life lost is one too many.
Making the public more aware of the dangers and safety concerns in work zones can be impactful, but influencing elected officials who can make real changes to help protect you on the job may be equally important. At Ohio Laborers’ District Council and LiUNA, we actively work with both Democrat and Republican legislators on bills that support our mission to keep you safe. From supporting safer flagging legislation in Ohio, to proposing a “Work Zone Safety Camera Initiative” to Governor DeWine, OHLDC is fighting for your safety on the job. And, as highlighted in the call to action on the reverse side, we stand with Governor DeWine in his efforts to pass stronger distracted driving laws.
You and your union brothers and sisters dedicate yourselves to building safe infrastructure for all Ohioans. Our goal is to ensure each and every one of you return home safely to your loved ones after every shift.
Did you know, even though traffic throughout the state of Ohio was down about 17% in 2020 traffic deaths rose 7% compared to 2019.
In 2019, Ohio had 18 fatal work zone crashes with 19 fatalities.