• Safer Highways

Lockdown Mk2 - An opportunity think outside the box and innovate

- Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that new Covid-19 curbing measures will last from November 5 until at least December 2nd although ministers privately admit this may be extended

- People are being told to work from home wherever possible.

- But Johnson said: “Workplaces should stay open where people can’t work from home – for example in the construction or manufacturing sectors.”

Highways projects and construction sites will continue to operate during the latest lockdown which comes into force from Thursday, which according to Safer Highways CEO presents an opportunity to do things differently.

On Saturday evening at just after 6.30pm the PM issued a stay at four-week stay at home home order for millions of people across England designed to try and curb the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The public will only be able to leave for essential reasons - like work, travel, exercise and taking care of vulnerable people.

However, there were a number of notable exceptions as well as key workers across the NHS and emergency services.

Significantly these included Construction workers, of which those who work upon the public highway are a part of.

As the nation comes to terms with a national lockdown its business as usual for our industry

So what does this mean for our workforce and could it be that there is possibly a positive to take from what has been a pretty negative 2020.

Well according to Safer Highways CEO Kevin Robinson, this is a distinct possibility.

Speaking on Sunday after the announcement Mr Robinson said,

"During the months of April and May we saw significantly less amounts of traffic on our roads - this gave us the opportunity to carry out works which under normal circumstances would never have been possible.

Quieter streets mean an opportunity to accelerate works

"We saw major schemes accelerated and even works completed open the M25 during daylight hours, due to roads having significantly lower levels of road users.

"These were completed in an environment where we were still learning about the beast that is Covid and being ultra cautious about how we exposed our people.

"For many years we have adopted the attitude where we do things the way we always have because we know what we will get and that's acceptable and as we know reasonably safe.

"Covid meant we had to operate outside of the box and leave that comfort zone.

"As an industry we found new ways of getting the job done without any further significant risk to our people.

"Make no mistake, a second wave is no less threatening to human life, but now we understand our enemy, have established working practices and treatments of the infected have developed rapidly.

"But in my opinion, for our sector this represents a massive opportunity as long as we level the playing field and all of the supply chain collaborate and work together."

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