Work in a safe zone – it’s the best way

I’ve worked across a wide range of industries and have seen first-hand, the awful consequences of injury and compromised safety practices.  At SiteZone Safety we’ve focussed on reducing worker/vehicle collision because the accident and fatality rates remain high in the UK. I want to continue to raise awareness about this danger, as employees are seriously injured or killed every year because they’ve been struck by a moving vehicle.

This blog is where I’ll share my insights and thoughts on the issues surrounding personnel/collision risk. Worker/vehicle collision is a threat across several busy and thriving UK industries.  Unless you work in these industries, it’s not really perceived as a pressing issue. We generally only ever hear about accidents on public highways when pedestrians and cyclists are hit by vehicles on the road.  

However, in any industry where workers on foot and work vehicles are interacting in contained spaces, the threat of collision between the two is always there. Construction sites are obvious danger spots. Waste/refuse recycling sites and depots also represent a challenge for those trying to introduce effective safe systems of work. The same can be said of the transport sector with fleets of lorries or vans constantly operating alongside workers in depots. There are several more collision risks that I could name.

Despite safety practices, the statistics tell a grim story. The 2017 HSE accident report listed being struck by a moving vehicle as the second most common cause of fatalities accounting for 17% of the total number of work-related fatalities in the UK.  However, there were also tens of thousands of non-fatal injuries reported where being struck by machinery was the cause, including being hit by vehicles.

I believe that technology can play a major part in keeping workers safe. Improved technological applications have a much bigger part to play in the day to day risk management when workers are in potential danger.

However, more than technology, sharing key information with workers and managers to raise their daily awareness on the job is probably more important. Regular briefings and training are vital to keep workers aware of the dangers.

It’s good to share and discuss topics that will help to revolutionise work-related safety culture.  No at-risk sector should be excluded and if it helps managers and workers alike to think differently and more acutely about safety, then together we can only go from strength to strength. Welcome to my blog.

About the author

Gary Escott is the co-founder of SiteZone Safety, he has worked in the field of mobile plant safety for 15 years and has worked on the introduction of technology based safety products across other sectors. His goal is reducing the risk of collisions between vehicles and vulnerable persons using innovative products and technology.

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