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Published July 09, 2012, 07:13 PM

Authorities urge caution in construction zones

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) -- Yet another crash near the I-94 construction zone over the Buffalo River east of Moorhead, has authorities pleading with drivers to slow down.

By: Kevin Wallevand, WDAY

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) -- Yet another crash near the I-94 construction zone over the Buffalo River east of Moorhead, has authorities pleading with drivers to slow down.

The driver of a motorcycle is in critical condition after the Sunday night crash. Traffic is especially heavy at the beginning and end of the weekends, and law enforcement says speed and driver distractions are to blame.

As crews continue with the bridge work over the Buffalo River on Interstate 94 east of Moorhead, traffic zips through the narrow head-to-head lane. Because so many drivers refuse to slow down, MNDOT has put up additional signs, warning motorists of the upcoming construction zone.

Mark Herbranson - Minnesota State Patrol: "Message has to be to all motorists, we had an accident on the bridge this morning that backed up traffic all the way to 34th street. It is stop and go, so you have to be prepared while you're driving on the interstate at all times. Give yourself distance and enough reaction time to slow down for these kind of emergencies and incidents."

Back on June 15th a semi car crash sent Roberta Haspel to the hospital. She is still there in satisfactory condition. Then on Sunday night the driver of a motorcycle rear ended a car that was stopped in traffic near the construction zone. The driver of the motorcycle was hospitalized. People returning to town after the weekend packed the interstate east of Moorhead until traffic came to a standstill.

Construction crews say they see people ignoring the orange signs and cones daily, drivers distracted and in a rush.

Rod Lanners - Schroeder Construction: "They don't seem to want to slow down. I mean, they should automatically slow down when they see the barrels. They should know people are actually working."

Bridgework over the Buffalo River started in June. The head to head traffic will stay in place until work is done, sometime in late July.

Then, work begins on the eastbound bridge. The head to head traffic will switch to the other side. Everything should be finished in October.

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