Contractor fined over death of a motorcyclist who hit temporary concrete crash barriers
Alfred McAlpine Capital Projects has been fined £250,000 for the death of a motorcyclist at a roadworks site in 2005.
The motorcyclist was killed when he hit temporary concrete crash barriers weighing over two tonnes each that had been laid in a line across the road. There were no warning signs or traffic cones along the route to warn drivers of the closure.
The fatal incident occurred on the former A228, a single carriageway road near Hoo on the Isle of Grain, Kent.
The road was being downgraded to a local through-road following the opening of a new section of dual carriageway built by Alfred McAlpine Capital Projects running parallel to it.
The company had earlier pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health & Safety At Work etc Act 1974 following an HSE investigation.
At Maidstone Crown Court today it was fined £250,000 and ordered to pay £5,859 in costs.
HSE Inspector John Underwood said: “This was an wholly avoidable incident which led to unnecessary loss of life. The ‘Road Closed’ signs and the traffic cones had been missing for more than eight weeks before the incident – yet the contractor was working in the area almost every day.
“The temporary traffic management system should have been checked at least once a day but this was never done properly. The barriers were only 450mm high and from a distance they could have been mistaken for a shadow or a change in the colour of the tarmac. It is clear the motorcyclist braked hard and tried to avoid the barriers but could not stop in time.
“In the last five years 12 members of the public have lost their lives in reportable incidents relating to road work construction activity. It is vital that contractors provide clear information to the travelling public on the approach to road works. Some of the original signs and cones may have been vandalised or damaged by construction traffic or used in other places by construction workers. Contractors must actively manage inspections and replace damaged and missing items.”
Alfred McAlpine Capital Projects has been handed a £250,000 fine following the death of a motorcyclist at one of its roadworks sites in 2005.
The motorcyclist died when he collided with temporary concrete crash barriers that had been laid in a line across the former A228 old Ratcliffe Highway in near Hoo on the Isle of Grain, Kent.