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Highway Worker Struck, Killed In Howard County

SCAGGSVILLE, Md. (WJZ) — A Maryland state highway worker is struck and killed on the job–something that tragically happens too often on area roads.

Monique Griego has more on the investigation into what happened.

Police say that worker was on the road setting up cones when he was struck by a 17-year-old driver. Investigators are still trying to figure out why he didn’t see him.

Just before 9:30 p.m. Tuesday night, a contract worker for the Maryland State Highway Administration is struck while setting up a work zone in the westbound lane of Route 216 near Route 29 in Howard County.

“He was on the job setting out cones to close up the roadway when he was struck by an oncoming vehicle,” said Mary Phelan, Howard County Police.

Howard County Police say the worker, who was wearing a reflective vest, died at the scene. He’s been identified as 40-year-old Erick Meekins of Baltimore.

The driver who hit Meekins stayed until police arrived. Investigators say their name is not being released because they’re only 17-years-old.

As of right now, Howard County Police say speed and alcohol do not seem to be factors in the crash. They are also looking into the possibility of distracted driving.

“There’s no indication of any of those things at this time, however, the investigation is very early,” Phelan said.

Back in January, another work zone crash in Cecil County left two highway workers dead. Police say the construction area was well marked at the time.

In a statement to WJZ, the State Highway Administration said:

“Highway workers are many times separated from high-speed traffic by only a cone or a barrel.  We must continue to remind each and every driver to reduce speeds, drive attentively and keep our workers safe.”

Police echoed that same message.

“So motorists are warned, and anytime that they start to see cones out on the roadway they should be slowing down and taking caution,” said Phelan.

Again, no charges have beenfiled in the case. The investigation is ongoing.

That section of Md. 216 where the accident occurred is being upgraded with new lighting.

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