I see three factors in dangers to road flagging persons.
Obviously some drivers are jerks who drive dangerously and abuse flagging persons.
But flagging persons are a danger to themselves. In my judgment they should never turn their back to vehicles, never stand in front of vehicles – one slip by a driver and they are maimed or worse. Only one flagging company operating in the Victoria area has many properly trained employees, the rest are deficient in safety and sense (such as communicating clearly). Construction companies doing their own flagging range from good to incompetent jerks.
I suggest flagging persons carry a noisemaker to warn workers ahead if a driver is proceeding against instructions, instead of standing in the way of thousands of pounds of motorized metal.
The third problem I see is policing – lack of feet on the street and a poor attitude. One police official dismissed claims of flag persons that people were throwing cigarettes at them, and was not interested in getting his duff out on the street to investigate.
Abusive jerks and deliberately dangerous drivers need to be re-educated by police in their face repeatedly. Their bad behaviour around flagging persons is not an isolated phenomenon – their mentality exploits people in other ways that endanger them.
Will voters develop and elect officials who will hire only competent contractors and put police on the street instead of spending on fluff like town poets and palm trees?