NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – New Mexico State Police is urging drivers to be cautious while traveling on I-40 near Clines Corners. Police say construction started in the area in April 2023, at mile marker 236. Since construction began NMSP says they have seen 18 crashes resulting in four deaths in the area. “I think a lot of that just has to deal with motorists not paying attention, you’re going a certain speed limit and then all of a sudden you’re coming to a halt and just not paying attention, they’re not reading the signs,” said New Mexico State Police Officer, Wilson Silver.

New Mexico’s Department Transportation along with State Police say excessive speeding and following other vehicles too closely are factors in these crashes. “I would factor that as people not obeying the speed limit, they are coming down I-40 doing 75mph or more and they see the construction area and they don’t slow down to 55mph,” said New Mexico Department of Transportation District 5 spokesperson, Jim Murray.

The construction involves reducing lanes from two down to one lane as I-40 merges. NMSP is urging drivers to slow down, be aware and drive cautiously in the area to keep themselves and others safe on the road.

With that in mind, NMDOT says it plans to add speed radar signs while State Police say it plans to increase patrols in the area during construction which is expected to wrap up in november,.