Management of public safety at closed sites
This year there have been 8 fatalities involving members of the public in former quarries, the majority of which were water related, only one was at an MPA member site.
These deaths and the summary below of several incidents of trespass reported by a major quarrying company at their closed sites over recent months are a reminder of why quarry operators need to remain vigilant in the management of closed sites.
1. A member of the public sustained serious and life-threatening injuries when they accidently fell from an exposed face while walking their dog. The injured person was rescued via air ambulance and is expected to remain in hospital for several months.
2. A dog walker had to be rescued from a ledge having attempted to swim across the water filled quarry in an attempt to save their dog. Both the owner and the dog were rescued with no injuries sustained.
3. Three dog walkers had to be rescued from the quarry including one who had become stuck on a ledge on the face. They had accessed the quarry from the top along a public footpath and got into difficulties when they attempted to follow the footpath down the face.
4. Several incidents of trespass have been experienced over the summer months including a group of children who were found swimming in the lagoon having broken through the perimeter fencing.
ACCIDENT / INCIDENT IMAGES
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LEARNING POINTS / ACTIONS TAKEN
The company issued the following reminder on the management of closed sites.
• Ensure a closed site audit has been completed.
• All incidents of trespass should be recorded and reported to the police.
• Ensure that up to date site plans are available showing locations of public footpaths.
• Conduct an inspection of site boundary fences already in place and determine if current arrangements are adequate.
• Ensure that boundary and hazard warning signage is in place and adequate.
• Review security arrangements at closed sites and determine if they are sufficient i.e. is there the need for on-site security, CCTV etc.
• Are emergency arrangements in place, adequate and up to date: check site emergency phone number/contact details and ensure that they work.
• Ensure that closed site risk assessment has been completed – from this determine the frequency of inspections and visits to the site.
• Ensure that closed site inspections are being completed at least monthly.
• Review closed site management controls against UKCP15 requirements.
It may also be useful to review the MPA 'Guidelines for the management of public safety on MPA members' operational and non-operational sites' . See the additional pdf.
LEARNING POINTS / ACTIONS IMAGES
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