By Laura Haefeli

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Overnight Highway 50 construction near Sacramento State is frustrating students who are preparing for finals.

“A loud boom, a loud thump,” said Sacramento State Junior Charlie Saechao, who’s studying for finals. “[Students in the dorms] can hear a jackhammer hitting the ground and they’re like, ‘Oh, is that an earthquake?’ ”

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The Highway Fix 50 project is paid for by Senate Bill 1 funding including more than $380 million from taxpayers with the aim of reconstructing roadways and bridges on the busy highway.

“Next week is going to be our final exam and we have to study really hard this week,” Saechao said.

Instead of sleeping, junior accounting major Saechao is wide awake listening to the loud construction work.

CBS13 video was taken along Highway 50 recently when the Fix 50 project first began, but now the same demolition is happening behind Sac State dorms between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

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Caltrans said working during daytime hours is too dangerous for workers and traffic volume is too high compared to the overnight hours.

“With high traffic volume, we don’t want to increase their risk of getting in a collision because we’ve got construction vehicles moving in and out,” said Raquel Borrayo, a Caltrans spokesperson.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2020, more than 6,500 work zone collisions occurred on California roadways and there were an estimated 60 fatalities.

“I wish [those students] well and hope they get good studying hours in but we have to perform this work at night,” Borrayo said.

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Fix 50 is expected to be completed by 2025.