Minnesota transportation workers who have been killed or injured while working on state roadways will be honored by the Minnesota Department of Transportation on Worker Memorial Day.

According to MnDOT, Governor Tim Walz has proclaimed April 28, 2023, as Worker Memorial Day in Minnesota in recognition of these transportation workers. To honor those highway workers who have died while working in work zones, the Interstate 35W Bridge in Minneapolis will be lit orange overnight on Friday, April 28.

MnDOT says that since 1960, 35 MnDOT workers and 16 contractors have lost their lives while working on Minnesota highways.

“Workers are out on Minnesota roads every day, often just feet away from moving traffic, to keep roads safe for everyone,” said Nancy Daubenberger, MnDOT commissioner. “We’re all in the work zone together. Every person in every work zone deserves to get home safely, every day. Do your part to keep everyone safe – slow down and avoid distractions while driving in work zones.”

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These types of tragedies can be avoided as it's motorists and passengers that are involved in the majority of work zone deaths and injuries. Therefore MnDOT urges all drivers to follow these recommendations in work zones:

  • Drive the speed limit. It helps create a consistent, more predictable traffic flow for everyone. The fine for speeding in a work zone is $300.
  • Drive undistracted. Avoid using cell phones, mobile devices, adjusting the radio – even eating – while in work zones.
  • Move over. Give workers room to safely complete their work.
  • Never enter a road blocked with barriers or cones.
  • Know before you go. Get real-time information about traffic and road conditions at 511mn.org or download the free 511mn app at Google Play or the App Store.
  • Be patient. Expect delays, especially during peak travel times.
  • Do the zipper merge.
  • Avoid unnecessary lane changes.

The Transportation Worker Memorial page lists the names of fallen workers in Minnesota and shows the permanent worker memorial installation located at MnDOT headquarters.

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