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Neither Funny nor Ironic: Construction Worker Killed While Putting up Safety Signs

It's all too common these days, and the media does the issue no justice to make light of it by attaching a funny or ironic headline. A 27-year-old highway construction worker was killed when police say he was trying to put up road safety signs for an expansion of a Texas highway.


No mention was made as to whether he was wearing the proper hi-visibility attire, including hi-vis vest, high visibility apparel or garments, reflectors or any other hi visibility gear - which usually means that he was. otherwise, they'd be having a field day with that fact also. As of yet, the only good news seems to be that there was no error of his own - just a fatal accident.


The accident happened around 8:30 in the morning in Conroe, Texas on Saturday, October 27th, off of the I-45 feeder road near State Highway 105. Police say a Williams Brothers construction truck was pulling an 18-foot trailer loaded with highway safety signs. The truck was stopped in the left lane just south of the exit ramp from I-45. A highway road worker, Joel Vega, was putting temporary caution signs along the roadside for drivers before their work began. But Kimberly Vick, 39, traveling southbound on the feeder, also on the left lane, struck the trailer, flipping it.


Investigators believe Vega was between the truck and trailer when the accident happened. Unfortunately, Vega was pronounced dead on the scene by police. They're now trying to figure out if the driver was able to see the caution arrows on top of the truck.


As of yet, no cause of the accident has been determined. Vick was transported to Conroe Regional Medical Center. It is “too early to tell” if charges will be filed against Vick, Conroe Police Sgt. Joe Smart said, and the case is under investigation. No citations have been issued in the wreck.


OSHA has opened an investigation with Williams Brothers, which on its website counts TxDOT as its principal client, OSHA spokesman Juan Rodriguez said Monday. The investigation is ongoing.


Officials with Williams Brothers were unavailable for comment.
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The Brilliant Series breakaway vests, from ML Kishigo, offer both increased visibility and protection from entanglement. In addition to the 5-point breakaway design, high visibility background material and the 2" wide reflective tape, the vest also utilizes Brilliant Trim reflective edging which considerably improves the vest's low light visibility. The reflective piping improves recognition of the wearer by distinguishing their silhouette from the other stationary objects around them in a work zone. The vest is constructed of a durable and breathable, Ultra-Cool 100% polyester mesh. Vest features include: zipper closure; mic tabs on chest; inside 2-tier, 4-division pencil pocket; flapped radio pocket; and inside left patch pocket.


ANSI/ISEA 107 Class 2 compliant.

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