CLOCS – Construction Logistics & Cycle Safety – demonstrated the successful results of the first two years of the industry-led initiative at its bi-annual progress event at the ExCeL Exhibition Centre in London on 26th February and announced its plans to further increase the reach of the programme nationwide in the coming year.
The event incorporated three aspects: a display of safety-optimised vehicles developed in partnership with CLOCS, a seminar programme and an exhibition of safer driving aids from a selection of suppliers which can help operators meet the CLOCS Standard. The vehicle fleet display included the new low-entry high-vision Mercedes-Benz Econic tipper – a high-vision tipper designed for construction industry use – and vehicles from DAF Trucks, Scania, Volvo and MAN with higher-vision options, incorporating lower cabs and additional glass for improved driver vision.
The keynote speech was given by Sir Peter Hendy CBE, Commissioner of Transport for London, with presentations given by representatives from road safety charities Road Peace and See Me Save Me, and the legal angle explained by Jonathon Backhouse from Backhouse Jones Solicitors.
London’s Transport Commissioner, Sir Peter Hendy CBE, said: “Every death and injury on our roads is a tragedy and ruins lives. At TfL we are reducing these wherever possible, and are proud to be a supporter and funder of CLOCS, which has been making great progress to make all road users safer.
“The new vehicles on show today, with massively reduced blind spots, show what can be done if people join together for a common good to solve a simple problem. We will continue our work to improve freight road safety in all aspects, be it collaboration, regulation, enforcement and lobbying, to create a Capital fit for freight, and freight fit for the Capital.”
Supported by its Champions*, the event provided an update on all the things that the initiative has helped to achieve over the last year, including Members of the European Parliament voting to improve road safety through redesigned HGV cab designs and the addition of safety features; the roll-out and widespread take up of the CLOCS Manager system – a collision reporting and management tool for drivers and operators – and the successful implementation of the CLOCS Standard within construction sector supply chains across the UK, with 23 major clients and projects specifying it in contracts.
CLOCS also launched two new guidance publications at the event. The first of these is the CLOCS Guide –Vehicle safety equipment, a guide for operators on specifying safety features for their vehicles to stay in line with the CLOCS Standard. This includes advice on assessing vehicle safety options, complying with the CLOCS, FORS and TfL Work Related Road Risk Compliance and examples of policy documents for easy implementation into operator processes. The second is a CLOCS Compliance toolkit which helps clients to implement the standard in a consistent way.
Dave Hart, Logistics & Supply Chain at CEMEX UK and CLOCS Champion said: “Yesterday’s event was a good opportunity for us to show not just the industry and the public, but also to remind ourselves, of the progress CLOCS has made in improving safety in the construction industry over the last two years. Keeping vulnerable road user safety firmly at the forefront of the industry’s mind is central to our work and we will continue to be the driving force of the initiative going forward.
“With a large fleet of nearly 1000 vehicles travelling throughout the country, we are aware of the consequences of road accidents involving vulnerable road users such as cyclists. We all share the road and have to take responsibility for our own and each other’s safety.”
Cynthia Barlow OBE, campaigner for RoadPeace and speaker at the event, said: “My daughter was killed by a concrete mixer lorry while she was cycling to work in 2000. Construction vehicles are still disproportionately involved in the deaths and serious injuries of vulnerable road users, cyclists and pedestrians, and it is unacceptable to allow this to continue when preventive action can be taken. The CLOCS Champions have demonstrated that the right policies, training, and technology can make a difference and we now need to spread this across the country and throughout the supply chain in the construction logistics industry. We can stop these needless tragic deaths.”
CLOCS is an industry-supported, TfL-backed initiative, which came about as a result of an independent research report of the same name published in 2013. The research made a number of recommendations on how collisions between members of the construction industry and vulnerable road users might be reduced. It is aiming for national reach via the roll out of a consistent standard for managing work-related road safety. While the focus so far has been on London, a number of CLOCS Champions are nationwide companies and the initiative will travel much further afield during 2015.