The workers of Sheffield City Council’s highways contractor, Amey will be wearing body cameras in a bid to protect themselves from abuse and other untoward incidents whilst on duty.
Sheffield City Council said the decision was made after they encountered a number of incidents against their operatives working on-site across the city.
It has been reported in December last year that council employees were subject to abuse by drivers in Sheffield over delays caused by maintenance work.
Some would throw cones and barriers at the employees, shouting abuse, spitting and mounting pavements in fits of road rage.
Now that the council’s highway contractor restarted their 2021 resurfacing at the beginning of April, members of the public have been advised that more maintenance work will take place to improve the condition of roads and footpaths.
Peter Hancock, Principal Operations Manager at Streets Ahead said: “We’ve now started our investment programme for this year, targeting areas around schools, which were closed over the Easter holidays.
“By undertaking this work, we’re ensuring residents can benefit from safer and smoother routes, whether they’re on foot, cycling or travelling in a vehicle.
“Our operatives will be working in COVID-safe bubbles so please don’t approach them whilst they are on site. We must close some roads whilst work is being undertaken for the safety of our operatives and members of the public, so please respect the closures and follow the diversions in place.
“Following a number of incidents against our operatives working on-site across the city, workers will be wearing body-worn CCTV cameras so if there is any anti-social behaviour this will be captured, and all footage shared with the police.
“We would like to take this opportunity to remind people to respect our workforce who are working under difficult and often challenging conditions to enable us all to benefit from an improved and safe street scene.”
Streets Ahead began resurfacing some roads and footpaths closest to local schools, whilst traffic and footfall was reduced during the Easter Break.
Streets Ahead is a huge city-wide highways maintenance contract that is upgrading and then maintaining the condition of Sheffield’s roads, pavements, street lights, bridges and other items on or around the streets.
Residents and businesses affected by the programme will receive a letter ahead of works starting in their area.