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Work Zone Safety Poster Contest

Work Zone Safety Poster Contest

Public works and road agencies throughout Kent County collaborate for the seventh annual Work Zone Safety Poster Contest for third-grade students. From April 18 to May 8, third graders are invited to design a "caution sign" that helps spread an important safety tip for those traveling through a work zone.

The poster contest aligns with National Work Zone Awareness Week, April 17 to 21, and supports this year’s theme, “You play a role in work zone safety. Work with us.” Participating agencies include the cities of East Grand Rapids, Grand Rapids, Grandville, Kentwood, Walker and Wyoming, the Kent County Road Commission, and the Michigan Department of Transportation.

"Our crews are continually trained regarding how to take proper safety precautions and respond appropriately to emergencies while in a work zone. We need the traveling public to use similar care and caution as they navigate the orange barrels," said Steve Warren, managing director of the Kent County Road Commission.

Appleview Elementary School third-grade students have participated in the project every year since its inception. Teacher Linnea Hurley says that the contest is a great way to introduce her class to safe driving practices through easy-to-understand tips and interactive activities. “The project gives students a better understanding of what they see in construction zones while riding with their families and instills compassion for the families of the crew members, themselves. Students feel engaged and are excited to create their own work zone safety sign.”

Work Zone Safety Poster Contest Entry Examples

Work Zone Safety Poster Contest Resource Folder
Work Zone Safety  Resource Folder includes a letter describing the contest, caution sign template entry, submission cover page and instructions, work zone safety videos, and tip sheet.

How to Participate
To participate, third-grade students are asked to design a “caution sign” that focuses on one of the following safety tips for driving through a work zone:

  • Stay Focused/Avoid Distractions. Dedicate your full attention to driving. Avoid distractions like using a phone, eating or adjusting dashboard controls like the radio.
  • Obey Flaggers and Work Zone Signs. Flaggers are people who help direct traffic safely through work zones. It is important that motorists obey directions given by flaggers and any temporary traffic control signs or devices. These help to define a safe path through the work zones.
  • Slow Down, Move Over. Workers are often just feet away from motorists. That’s why Michigan’s “Move Over” law requires drivers to move over one lane when an emergency or road agency vehicle is on the side of the road with its lights flashing. If it is not possible to move into another lane due to traffic, weather, or road conditions, the motorist should slow down and pass with caution.

How to Create the Caution Sign (select one):

Options for Contest Submission (select one):

  • Scan or take a picture of the student's "warning sign" and email it to Maura Lamoreaux at 
  • Make sure to include the student’s name


  • Third-grade teachers may submit entries for their class at one time following directions provided here.

Deadline: Submissions are due by 5:00 p.m., Monday, May 8, 2023

Top Entries

  • Winners will be notified the week of May 15
  • Winners will receive a special prize of recognition during National Public Work Week, May 21-27
  • All participants will receive a "Certificate of Appreciation"