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Drivers Urged To Put Down Phones During Construction On I-95 Express Lane

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The orange cones on the I-95 expressway should be signal to put down your phone — if you hadn't already.
Martin Di Caro
The orange cones on the I-95 expressway should be signal to put down your phone — if you hadn't already.

The Commonwealth of Virginia is kicking off a distracted driving awareness campaign  called "Orange Cones, No Phones" today. The goal of the campaign is to get people to put down their cell phones during construction on the 95 Express Lanes this summer.

More than half of I-95 drivers — 56 percent in all — reported using their phone behind the wheel, according to a survey of 943 drivers conducted by Transurban and AAA Mid-Atlantic. Virginia Secretary of Transportation Sean Connaughton that represents a serious risk to both drivers themselves and construction workers in the field.

"In fact in this work zone alone, there are 1,500 workers are out here, out on the work site," Connaughton says. "Every one of them is out here doing great work for the people on the Commonwealth."

With construction taking place along a 29-mile stretch from Edsall Road in Fairfax to Garrisonville Road in Stafford this summer, the potential for a deadly accident is not insignificant. Especially as eight of 10 crashes in Virginia are related to a distracted driving incident.

For those now cowed by awareness campaigns and sobering statistics, using a phone while driving will become a primary offense punishable by a $125 fine as of July 1.

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