New equipment designed to protect road workers

Self-standing stop and go boards fitted with cameras and warning signs will be used in Somerset in an effort to protect road workers.

Skanska and client Somerset County Council have joined forces to install the boards, which are traditionally held in place by road workers.

The equipment is designed to reduce accidents, and abuse of road workers, by removing the need for operatives to stand close to moving traffic.

Over the last 12 months, 14 workers have been seriously injured while operating traffic management systems. Injuries are most common amongst those using stop and go boards.

Incidents of motorists ignoring signs, as well as physically or verbally abusing workers have also been recorded.

Councillor David Fothergill, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “The county council takes staff safety and any abuse of its employees and sub-contractors very seriously and any actions that put road workers at risk will not be tolerated.

“I am therefore pleased that Skanska has worked with its employees and the council to create a solution to this problem.”

The signs were developed and manufactured by Eurosigns. They are equipped with a wide-angle automatic recording system, providing high-resolution images. These use an intelligent power management system which automatically turns the sign off when not in use, prolonging the life of the battery.

Kenny Gallagher, Skanska site agent at Priorswood Depot, commented: “These signs act as a great deterrent and will encourage drivers to slow down and pay attention, improving the safety of our workers and the travelling public. The cameras record continuously, so if an incident does occur, we have the evidence to pursue a prosecution and hopefully secure a conviction.”

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