A growing number of accidents are being caused by people not being able to see properly when working on the road:
Poor visibility, cramped working conditions, time pressure, traffic racing past — experts say that people put their life at risk when working on a road sweeper. "Although it looks like an easy job, it isn't."
An accident involving a road sweeper and two road workers took place recently during some routine maintenance work, when poor visibility resulted in both men ending up underneath the vehicle.
This accident underlined the potential dangers of working with road sweepers. Experts maintain that the work is particularly hazardous as a result of poor visibility in the dark, cars driving past—which can blind the road workers—and a lack of guidelines that are mandatory by law.
"Although it looks like an easy job, it isn't," says René van der Steen, chair of professional association Het Zwarte Corps. "Drivers have to maneuver the road sweepers in very tight spaces, which often involves having to reverse," he explains. "They often have to work in the dark too, with poor visibility." Time pressure also creates hazardous situations, says Van der Steen. "The workers need to complete the work quickly because the road can't be closed off for too long. A great number of people are working in the same area at the same time. Things are done on the fly and then people don't pay attention properly."
"An extra pair of eyes can make all the difference. At the moment, everyone has their own job and is working on getting that completed, but nobody has an overview of the situation. Although there is a foreman, they can't manage safety on their own."
In theory, there are plenty of safety measures that are intended to prevent accidents from happening, from rotating beacons, cameras (with night vision), to audible signals from reversing vehicles and active detection systems. For more information on safety measures to www.orlaco.com/trucks.