Thames Water fined £100,000 by TFL for unsafe roadworks

Transport for London has prosecuted Thames Water for running unsafe roadworks at three sites on major roads in the capital (Picture: TFL/PA)

A water company has been fined £100,000 over unsafe roadworks, including one site which could have led to a head-on crash.

Thames Water was prosecuted for failures at three locations on major roads in London.

Pedestrians at one on Eltham Road in Lewisham had to step into the road in order to pass by.

This meant that vehicles similarly had to veer across into adjacent lanes of oncoming traffic, which Transport for London (TfL) said ‘could have caused a head-on collision’.

Thames Water failed to adequately sign, light and guard a site on West Hill near Putney, west London, or provide pedestrians and cyclists with suitable alternative routes.

The firm then ‘repeatedly failed’ to rectify the problems when notified by TfL.

It further failed to provide details of the exact location, dimensions and other engineering information related to work on the Purley Way in Croydon, south London.

TfL stated that this had a ‘significant impact on the road network’.

Thames Water has been fined £100,000 for unsafe roadworks including a site that could have caused a head-on crash (Picture: PA)

Glynn Barton, TfL’s director of network management, said: ‘We work hard to keep London moving and, as part of that, we need the co-operation of utility companies.

‘Ensuring roadworks are safe is vital to keeping people walking, cycling and using the road network safely, which is why we prosecuted Thames Water for breaching these important safety rules.

‘We are working with Thames Water and other utility companies to ensure that roadworks are carried out properly, safely and with minimal disruption to road users and the company makes significant improvements.’

Thames Water said it recognised it did not meet the high standards customers expected and was ‘sorry for the inconvenience’ caused (Picture: Transport for London/PA)

All three sets of roadworks took place in October and November 2019.

The prosecution was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A Thames Water spokeswoman said: ‘We recognise we did not meet the high standards we and our customers expect on these occasions and we’re sorry for the inconvenience this caused.

‘Ensuring the health and safety of our staff, customers and the locations where we work is one of our highest priorities and it’s an area we continuously seek to improve and embed within our company.’

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