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  • Writer's pictureSafer Highways

Shocking images of worker abuse cause industry outcry

A shocking image posted on social media of a traffic management operative who was attacked has caused industry wide outcry.

The image, posted by Ant Lindley, HSEQ Manager at Centurion Site Services shows in graphic detail the level of injury which one of his operatives suffered at the hands of a group of youths on a Network Rail site.

Speaking to Safer Highways CEO, Kevin Robinson, Ant explained the circumstances which led up to the horrific attack.

He said, " One of our team was sat in a works van on a site when he heard a crash, which in the individuals own words sounded like a tower crashing to the ground.

"Upon leaving his vehicle to investigate the noise he was set upon by a group of three youths in a totally unprovoked attack.

"All of the witnesses on site said that there was not any interaction and that one of our people was simply set upon by the individuals."

As the graphic photograph shows the individual sustained injuries die to heavy blows to the face, particularly around the eye area.

Following the post on his own social media page Mr Lindley said that inside 24 hours it had been viewed over 17,000 times with many posting comments decrying the incident.

Several of these came from Safer Highways Board members and also individuals on the #stampitout Taskforce.

One of those came from Paula Parsons, Construction Manager at Tilbury Douglas, who said,

"This is absolutely appalling!! Yet another case of a worker being abused and attacked when just trying to do his job!!

"We absolutely need to take action to #stampitout and arm our people with the skills in conflict resolution and behavioural management. And also the collection of data around these type of events so we are aware of hotspots before we go out onto the network and develop mitigation measures before we put our people to work.

"We can’t do this in silos, it must be done as an industry collective, and is something I’m really passionate about and why I am so heavily involved in the Stamp it out campaign.

"I sincerely hope your operative is ok, not just physically but mentally also."

Whilst others posting also said,

"Unfortunately this seems to be on the rise, over the past 12 months I have lost count of the amount of operatives, particularly traffic management operatives, being abused, attacked or threatened with weapons. I’m not slating the police, they do a tough job, but not one of these incidents went anywhere other than obtaining a crime reference number, as an industry we need to lobby those in power more and perhaps get our senior industry leaders to sign up to a safety charter before something more serious happens."

Echoing these sentiments Safer Highways CEO, Kevin Robinson said,

" This abhorrent behaviour is totally unacceptable and as those who commented have said it seems to be becoming more commonplace than we would ever care to imagine.

"This is why, as an industry, we have come together to form the #stampitout programme. For the sake of our people we must stand shoulder to shoulder and send out a clear message that this kind of abuse is unacceptable."

"For anyone in the industry who wants to learn more please visit the Stamp it Out website and I implore every organisation in the sector to come together to put an end to this abuse once and for all."

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