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17 Aug 2018

MPA Calls for More Commitment and Action on Vulnerable Road User Safety

Following recent tragic cyclist and pedestrian fatalities, MPA has once again called for a greater public and private sector commitment to vulnerable road user safety.

Many in the construction supply chain have been working to improve the safety of pedestrians, cyclists and other vulnerable road users. In recent years, MPA member companies and other organisations have invested and demonstrated their commitment to CLOCS, the ground-breaking road safety initiative from the construction industry.

CLOCS recognises that all parts of industry have a key role to play in improving road safety. Suppliers and their hauliers should ensure drivers receive targeted training, and fit HGVs with additional safety equipment beyond legal requirements. Further, contractors should ensure delivery sites have good access and safe unloading facilities and clients should make adherence to CLOCS a procurement requirement. The advantages of CLOCS are that it involves a wide range of stakeholders, is both practical and forward-looking and provides a standard which can be used anywhere. No-one needs to design a new standard or procedure to minimise collisions between HGVs and vulnerable road users, CLOCS is the template and will evolve.

MPA Chief Executive, Nigel Jackson, emphasised the need for full construction industry commitment to CLOCS and road safety. "If we want practical solutions for road safety, and particularly for the most vulnerable of road users, Government should insist that all public sector construction contracts require suppliers to be CLOCS compliant. Contractors and private sector construction clients, many of whom are clearly committed to on-site safety, should operate in the same manner outside the site gate in accordance with CLOCS and insist that their suppliers do.  There is a need for all major infrastructure developers responsible for spending significant sums of public money to be equally committed not just some."

Nigel Jackson also called for a more positive industry approach to the London Mayor's planned Direct Vision Standard (DVS) saying:

 "It is absolutely clear that too many people are being killed and injured on the roads particularly in London but also elsewhere. Given that for every pedestrian killed there are another 11 seriously injured and for every cyclist killed there are another 33 seriously injured, there are a lot of people narrowly escaping death every year due to the excellence of our emergency and medical services and often sheer luck. The London Mayor's Direct Vision Standard aims to apply the positive experience of CLOCS to all HGVs operating in London and the initiative should be supported by everyone in the industry.

Based on our experience of both CLOCS implementation and the London DVS preparation, there remains a disappointing lack of commitment in both the public and private sectors. The CLOCS website shows the businesses and organisations who are committed and by inference those who are not. But commitment is only part of the story and action on the ground is key and the supply chain as a whole needs to raise its game collectively if we are to avoid being judged by the worst offenders."