The Maryland Road Worker Protection Act of 2024 (SB 479, HB 513), new legislation that is designed to significantly increase enforcement measures in work zones, is part of the Moore-Miller administration’s 2024 package.

The package was created via the recommendations of the Work Zone Safety Work Group, which was chaired by Lt. Gov. Aruna Miller and comprised of a team of highway safety experts, law enforcement, labor leaders and roadway workers.

Under the legislation, the citation amount for automated speed enforcement in a work zone would increase from $40 to $290, matching the citation amount for a live officer stop for the same offense.

Currently, Maryland’s automatic speed camera enforcement citation is the lowest in the nation.

If it becomes law, the bill would remove restrictions that limit enforcement in work zones to allow more flexibility in installing cameras. This includes the requirement that all speed cameras have a physical operator present. It also allows for drivers to immediately be cited for violations within a work zone, eliminating the requirement that prohibits citations from being issued during a 30-day warning period upon initial deployment of a work zone camera.

Across Maryland, there are an average of 300 state road work zones with approximately 1,000 state employees and contractors placing themselves in harm’s way to maintain and improve Maryland’s roadways. In 2023, Maryland drivers crashed into more than 1,200 work zones, averaging more than three crashes per day.

“As a transportation engineer, I’ve been on road work sites and witnessed the risk that reckless driving poses to those who work on them,” said Miller. “By increasing enforcement measures for drivers who choose to drive at excessive speeds through a work zone, this legislation will better protect the men and women who do the vital jobs of building and maintaining the roads we rely on every day.

“These legislative actions will work in tandem with our administration’s ongoing educational and awareness campaigns,” she said, “in order to bring about a culture change in how motorists behave around roadway work zones.”