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New safety tool could save lives on Indiana roads

Highway construction workers put their lives on the line everyday. That’s why the Indiana Department of Transportation is trying to make their job a little safer.
 

Highway construction workers put their lives on the line everyday.  That’s why the Indiana Department of Transportation is trying to make their job a little safer.

By the beginning of next month every INDOT district in the state, including Fort Wayne, will begin using automatic flagging devices. 

The Automatic Flagger assistance devices have the ability to control traffic remotely.   They will replace a worker standing out in traffic with a paddle.

“It can be dangerous for our flaggers so this would put a machine in place of a human and just makes things safer,” said Mary Foster, INDOT. 

The idea is that these Auto-flaggers could potentially saves lives.  Lives like construction worker Ryan Zimmerman.

Back in 2011 Ryan Zimmerman, 25, died while he was working in a dug-up piece of concrete on U.S 27 in Decatur.   

Ryan's mother Laurel Miller says the automatic flagging devices would have saved her sons life.

“He absolutely would be alive today,” said Miller. 

Greenfield, IN is the only INDOT district that's currently using the flaggers, but Fort Wayne will receive a set by the end of the month.  

“I think the flaggers are a positive for the public because people will pay more attention to something like that,” said Miller. 

These high-tech flaggers come with a high price tag to taxpayers.

“A set costs almost $30,000,” said Foster. 

“When you loose someone like that especially a young person it devastates you, it devastates your whole family, and you cannot put a price on that,” said Miller. 

 

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