BATH, N.Y. (WETM) — Ahead of National Work Zone Awareness Week, State Police and the NYS DOT are partnering to enforce traffic laws in and around work zones to make it as safe as possible for workers on the road.

State Police in Stueben County set up an ‘Operation Hard Hat’ detail today along NYS Route 86 near Bath. In the detail, police dressed as construction workers to blend in and enforce traffic laws and work zone speed limits.

Sergeant Brian Bernard was in charge of the detail and stressed the importance of safe driving in work zones. Smaller lanes, tighter quarters, and DOT workers being present creates an environment where reckless driving can lead to fatal accidents.

According to, in 2020, 857 people were killed in 774 fatal work zone crashes.

While the initiative was located in Bath today, drivers can expect police details to be held at work zones all through the spring and summer during construction season.