To mark Road Safety Week (16-22 November) Highways England is urging all road workers to ensure they report any and all incidents of both incursions and abuse
Highways England revealed there were nearly 6,500 incidents of incursions to road workers in October 2017 and October 2020 – an average of 175 a month.
There were around 330 incidents of abuse reported from Sept 2019 to October 2020, an average of nearly one a day.
There has been a 10% increase in abuse incidents in the first 9 months of 2020 compared to the first 9 months of 2019 – with lower traffic flows in 2020 due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Highways England has recently lead a cross-industry project to raise awareness of road worker safety.
The footage below shows how road workers are at risk from road users.
‘Together we can make a difference’
Mark Byard, director of health and safety at Highways England, said: “Our roads keep the country moving, keep families connected and businesses in business, so our road workers are vital to everyone’s wellbeing, and their wellbeing is vital to us.
“175 reported incursions a month is far too many and it’s an issue on all types of roads, for our whole industry.
“I’m proud of the way the Highways sector has come together to raise awareness of the issue. We urge members of supply chain to report all incidents of incursions and abuse.”
James Haluch, managing director at Amey Highways and chair of the vehicle incursions working group, added: “In 2019, in Amey alone we recorded 753 actual vehicle incursions into our road closures.
“Worse still, we have an actual collision with a traffic management vehicle every 4 or so months. Each one of these results in injuries to our people and it is generally the case that the physical injuries heal far quicker than the mental health ones.
“This unprecedented collaboration by the Highways sector in raising awareness is so critical in helping to eliminate the risk to the people that maintain our road network to keep the country connected.
“A few moments lapse of concentration could be life-changing.”