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Calls for road users to be respectful towards highways workers as council backs road safety week

Posted on Friday 17th November 2023

Drivers and other road users in Staffordshire are being reminded to be respectful to highways workers carrying out repairs and works on the roads.

The reminder from Staffordshire County Council and Amey coincides with this year’s BRAKE Road Safety Week campaign starting on 20 November.

Over the last 12 months there have been more than 480 close calls involving non-compliance at road works and closures in Staffordshire. Incidents include motorists, pedestrians and cyclists ignoring and even moving signs, barriers and cones to enter a workspace occupied by Highways Operatives.

In other cases, drivers have carried out dangerous manoeuvres and mounted pavements to squeeze past roadworks putting crews lives at risk. There has also been a rise in incidents whereby Operatives have been subjected to threatening and aggressive behaviour directed at them by members of the public. Where camera footage is captured it is forwarded to the Police for investigation.

Robert Pritchard, Cabinet Support Member for Highways at Staffordshire County Council said:

Our highways workers do an important job keeping roads maintained and they should have the right to be safe when going about their work.

We’re using BRAKE’s Road Safety Week to highlight the risks that road users put our crews in when they try and drive through works areas and carry out dangerous manoeuvres. It’s only a small number of people who choose to behave like this but one incident on the roads is one too many. In the past we have passed footage on to the police who have taken action against individuals and we’ll continue to do this to make sure we keep crews safe.”

Richard Harris, Account Director for Amey said:

Our Highways Operatives work in a dangerous environment, often on fast roads where traffic flow is significant. We would urge all drivers to exercise caution and patience when driving through roadworks.

Unfortunately, in recent years we have seen an increase in incidents where the safety of our Highways Operatives is being placed at risk. Poor driving behaviour on Staffordshire roads will not be tolerated and appropriate action can and will be taken against motorists whose driving behaviour can be called into question.”

People can report any incidents to Staffordshire Police or on the county council's website.

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