Greenwood: Overheard from the road crew

Tom Greenwood
The Detroit News

Over the years, this column has served as the voice of hundreds, if not thousands, of motorists who have found themselves in freeway construction zones.

But in this column, I’m going to share the thoughts of those toiling away in construction zones — the people with their work boots on the ground.

Here’s what road workers for the Michigan Department of Transportation would like you to know:

■“Don’t jump to conclusions if you don’t see any ‘work’ taking place behind barrels. There may be other work going on that isn’t visible to drivers, such as closing lanes to let concrete cure.” — Eric Mueller, metro region traffic and safety operations engineer.

■“We understand most motorists would prefer all work to take place at night. However, some operations such as pothole patching need daylight conditions.

“Workers also face more danger at night because motorists driver faster when there’s less traffic.” — Sandy Montes, manager of the Oakland Transportation Service Group

■“I wish drivers would: slow down when I’m on the side of the road, pay attention while driving, move a lane over when I’m on side of the road and do not tailgate me when while I’m in the state vehicle. Remember: I want to make it home safe each day.” — Davis Woo, technical assistant traffic safety and operations, metro region office

■“Please be patient and pay full attention while driving in the work zone. We see motorists driving inside road and lane closures, plowing through holes in the road and even into wet concrete and hot asphalt.” — Ahmad Azmoudeh, Oakland Service Group

■“When you see us working, imagine it’s you or a loved one. Please slow down.” — Ron Jackson, Taylor Service Group

■“Stay focused while behind the wheel. Be vigilant ... and eliminate distractions or anything that removes focus from the road and road users.” — Georgina McDonald, Detroit Service Group

■“I’d like drivers to know how dangerous it is to speed in work zones and motorists not reading the traffic signs and message boards advising them to merge.” — Reggie Washington, Taylor Service Group

■“A vehicle can be a very dangerous weapon if used without regard for common sense. Please respect how fast a crash can occur. Lives can be altered as fast as the click of a ‘send’ button. Focus on the task at hand ... driving!” — David Ponder, Taylor Service Group

■“Put the phone down, don’t make or answer calls and definitely don’t text.” — Mia Silver, Metro Operations Engineer

(313) 222-2023

I-75: In Royal Oak, NB and SB will have the two left lanes closed at Woodward from 9 p.m. today until 5 a.m. Saturday for bridge repairs.

University Drive: In Auburn Hills, one lane of EB and WB is closed until 5 p.m. today from Opdyke to Pontiac.

I-94: In Detroit, EB and WB will have moving lane closures from Chene to French from 6 a.m. until 4 p.m. Saturday for road work.

M-1 (Woodward): In Detroit, NB and SB will be closed from Warren to Palm from noon until 10 p.m. Saturday for a festival.

M-150 (Rochester Road): In Rochester, NB and SB will be closed from Tienken to Second from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. Sunday for a special event.

M-24: In Oxford Township, NB and SB will be closed from East Street to Broadway from 2 p.m. until 4 p.m. Saturday for a special event.

M-3 (Gratiot): In Mount Clemens, the road will be closed from Crocker to Dickinson from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. Saturday for utility work.

U.S. 12 (Michigan): In Inkster, Michigan will be closed for 10 minute intervals just east of Middle Belt between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m. Saturday for utility work.

M-150 (Rochester Road): In Rochester Hills NB and SB will have intermittent lane closures near Avon Road from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. daily from Monday through Thursday for traffic signal work.