PHOENIX (3TV/CBS5) -- The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) is mourning the death of one of its employees who was killed Wednesday while on the job. ADOT says Frank Dorizio, 55, was struck and killed while setting up a sign to alert drivers about pavement repairs along Interstate 10 south of the Phoenix area.
The Arizona Department of Public Safety said the driver of a minivan struck Dorizio after "steering evasively to avoid rear-ending traffic congestion in front of him." DPS has not said whether distracted driving may be a factor.
Dorizio was a member of ADOT’s Incident Response Unit, which helps keep Phoenix-area freeways safe. Members of the unit set up traffic control, remove debris from the roadways and help stranded motorists.
“While the Arizona Department of Public Safety continues its investigation, this is a tragic reminder that drivers must stay alert around construction zones and always be prepared for the unexpected,” ADOT Director John Halikowski said. “Lives are on the line when dedicated highway workers like Frank Dorizio are making things better for all of us in work zones.”
In February, there were three deadly crashes along the same 9-mile stretch of freeway.
Dorizio joined ADOT in October 2015 as a highway operations worker with the Little Antelope Maintenance Unit in northern Arizona. Then, in 2017, he joined the Happy Valley Maintenance Unit in Phoenix. He joined the new Incident Response Unit last September.
“Whether or not we worked directly with Frank Dorizio, each of us at ADOT mourns his loss and honors his commitment to getting everyone safely 北京福彩官网,” Halikowski said. “His co-workers and friends say the same thing about Frank: ADOT was his family, and he was committed to our agency's mission and to the people of Arizona.”
Dorizio is the first ADOT worker since 1998 to be struck and killed while working along a highway.
To call attention to the need to stay alert around work zones, many of ADOT’s overhead message boards will show the following over the weekend:
"ADOT worker killed in work zone. Drive Alert."
ARIZONA'S MOVE OVER LAW
In Arizona, it is the law to move over at least one lane if you see a vehicle with flashing lights on the shoulder.
"If you're seeing anybody that's on the side of the road that's a stranded motorist, whether it's a dead battery or it's a flat tire, you should be doing the same exact thing," DPS Jared Trooper Schmidt told Arizona's Family in November. "You don't need flashing red and blue lights to dictate what you do. The Move Over Law should apply to everybody that's on the road."
Schmidt said that if it's not possible to move into another lane, it's vital that the drivers at least slow down.
On the heels of a Salt River Police officer killed and a Maricopa County deputy injured, both on the side of the highway, the Department of Public Safety wants to remind drivers about the importance of the move over law.
On Jan. 8, 2019, Salt River Police Officer Clayton Townsend was conducting a traffic stop on Loop 101 near McDowell Road when another car hit him and the vehicle he had pulled over.
Many states have something on the books called the Move Over/Slow down law. The law was created to keep emergency workers on the side of the freeway safe while they do their jobs. The law applies to any emergency vehicle that has its lights activated. Drivers are required to move over to another lane and if that's not possible they need to slow down to a reasonable speed.