WV Transportation

WV Transportation

WV Transportation

WV Department of Transportation

Police write dozens of tickets in crackdown on work zone speeders


Police chased down dozens of speeders and wrote tickets on Interstate 64 near Nitro on Friday, May 13, 2022, as part of a statewide crackdown on speeding through work zones.
“I have four Troopers down there, and three with the Public Service  Commission,” said Lt. Chris Zerkle with the West Virginia State Police. "In less than five minutes we've got all of them with somebody pulled over."
MEDIA: For an interview with Lt. Chris Zerkle of the West Virginia State Police, click here.
MEDIA: For B-roll video of law enforcement on site, click here.
Last year, there were 889 crashes in West Virginia work zones, killing five people and injuring more than 300. State Transportation Secretary Jimmy Wriston, P.E., has committed to zero work zone deaths on West Virginia highways this construction season.
In cooperation with the West Virginia Department of Transportation, West Virginia State Police, representatives from the state Public Service Commission, and law enforcement agencies all over the Mountain State have begun a targeted campaign to enforce work zone safety laws. Law enforcement will be running radar and issuing tickets on interstate and secondary road works zones all over the state in an attempt to get drivers to slow down and pay attention in work zones.
Speed limits in work zones vary according to the type of road. On interstates work zone speed limits are typically set at 55 mph.
But the WVDOT has clocked vehicles traveling at 90 mph or more in work zones, creating a serious hazard and potential for accidents. The WVDOT reminds drivers that penalties for speeding and other infractions in state work zones are doubled.

"The highest one we've got so far is 81 mph, out of state," Zerkle said. "We've got a CMV, which is a commercial vehicle, in the 70s."
Sixty-one WVDOT workers have been killed in work zone accidents over the years. Wriston said it’s incumbent on everyone – including construction workers – to be safe in work zones.
“It’s just not worth it,” Wriston said. “The best thing we can hope for our employees is to go home every night.”
Zerkle said it doesn’t matter if a person killed in a work zone is a driver, passenger, WVDOT worker, bystander or law enforcement officer. Police don’t want to have to knock on someone’s door to inform them they’ve lost a loved one to a traffic accident.
“We would much rather write you that speeding citation for speeding in a work zone than to deliver that death message that someone has lost their life,” Zerkle said. “We do not want to deliver that message.”
The WVDOT urges drivers to pay attention to speed limits in works zones, stay off their phones and pay attention to warning signs. The life you save might be your own.
MEDIA: For an interview with Matt Epling, and enforcement officer with the West Virginia Public Service Commission, click here.​​