National Work Zone Awareness Week kicks off, encourages safe driving

National Work Zone Awareness Week kicks off, encourages safe driving

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - 'Don't Be That Driver' is the theme of National Work Zone Awareness Week this year.

The annual spring campaign is held at the start of construction season to encourage safe driving through highway work zones.

Distracted driving is the focus of this year's campaign. The kickoff event will be held in Perrysburg on Tuesday, April 12.

Shannon Dethlefs plans to attend the event, she's the mother of 24-year-old Amber Rooks, who was killed by a driver in a work zone accident last spring outside Cincinnati.

"Went across four double lanes, plus a median, plus a turn lane, and hit them head on. And as she hit them head on, her car spun back around and hit others again," said Dethlefs.

Shannon says her daughter was working for a power line company when the accident happened. Out of several people injured, Amber was the only one who died.

Amber's name is now part of a memorial wall that holds the names of hundreds of people killed in a work zone.

"The concept is great because it means that none of these people are ever forgotten, but the idea of my daughters name being on this wall is extremely hard. She should never be on that wall, along with probably a lot of these other names," said Dethlefs.

Amber's story is just one example of why National Work Zone Awareness Week is in effect.

"Just be safe. These people want to go home. At the end of the day, they want to do their job, they want to go home and kiss their wife or husband, or their children goodnight," said Dethlefs.

The person responsible for Amber's death was recently convicted of multiple charges, including vehicular homicide and operating under the influence.

For more information on National Work Zone Awareness Week, click here.

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