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Highway work a frequent cause of Massachusetts work accidents

The death of 52-year-old state police Sgt. Douglas Weddleton, who was run down Friday night while working at a road construction site on I-95, has put the spotlight on Massachusetts road construction accidents and accidents involving police officers and emergency responders.

The Enterprise News reports the story of Trooper Mark Lombardi, who was reaching for the microphone in his cruiser to call a tow truck for an early morning accident on Route 24.

He woke up 12 hours later in the hospital. A drunk driver traveling more than 80 mph slammed into his cruiser in the breakdown lane of Route 24 southbound, near the Route 139 exit in Stoughton.

It was the first of three times his cruiser has been struck on state highways.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation reports that more than half the officers killed accidentally in 2008 died as a result of an automobile accident.

A July 2003 crash on Route 25 in Wareham left Trooper Ellen Engelhardt with permanent brain injuries. She is now in a nursing home.

For every fatal accident, there are 1,000 close calls. Traffic accidents while on the job are a leading cause of Massachusetts workers’ compensation claims.

Massachusetts Move Over Law took effect last March and requires all drivers to move over and/or slow down whenever an emergency or maintenance vehicle is display flashing lights. Please comply with this law. You could not only save yourself the hassle of a ticket, you could save a life and send a father or mother home safe to their family.

Friday’s accident occurred at a road construction zone, where Massachusetts work accidents are a common danger. As we reported last week on our Boston Personal Injury Attorney Blog, the Federal Highway Administration estimates that more than 1,000 workers are killed each year in highway accidents and more than 52,000 are seriously injured.

If you have been injured in a Massachusetts work accident, contact Boston Workers’ Compensation Attorney Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 877-617-5333.