KDOT Equipment Operator Cody King shares a story about an incident that took place and shows why safety on our highways should always be the top priority.
I started off the day mowing down by 399th street on 69 highway. While mowing the mower had a malfunction, so I called my supervisor to let him know and I started the drive into our shop on the shoulder. While driving, I had my strobes on as well as my running lights and my flashers. I got ready to go across the 303rd bridge on 69 highway and like always, I looked into my mirror to make sure no one was in the lane closest to me.
When I looked up, I saw a semi-truck crossing the white line onto the shoulder behind me and it wasn’t slowing down. At this point there was nowhere for me to bail off the highway because I was next to the guard rail. The semi side swiped me and I bounced between it and the bridge rail as it and I went across the bridge. Many different scenarios could have happened then but luckily the driver of the semi and myself were not harmed.
After I got to the other side of the bridge I pulled off and called my supervisor on the radio to let him know what had just happened, also I got out and removed the debris from the highway. As I walked back to the tractor and mower, I looked them over for damage. The semi had only hit one of the axels on the mower and had rubbed the left rear tire. All in all, the tractor and mower weren’t badly damaged. Like I said before, luckily the driver of the semi and myself were not harmed.
This accident has made me more aware while working on the highway. I always make sure to wait farther back before crossing a bridge and I always double check to make sure the lane is clear. My goal is to make sure me and my co-workers get home safely every night, so I’m going to do everything in my power to make sure I am safe and to make sure they’re safe while we’re working.