BT pay the price for dodgy roadworks

pavement slip trip fall

From 26/01/12:

Transport for London (TfL), a UK public authority with responsibility for most aspects of London city's transport system (e.g. roads, railways etc.), have successfully prosecuted both BT and Cable & Wireless (C&W) over a string of "badly managed roadworks".

The Westminster Magistrate's Court handed down several thousand pounds worth of fines to both firms for a raft of failings that included working without a permit, breach of permitting conditions and failure to correctly notify TfL promptly of works taking place.

The TfL Infringements
* BT was prosecuted for infringements at various locations on TfL roads including: Stamford Hill, Marylebone Road, Blackwall Tunnel, Eastern Avenue and Gunnersbury Lane. They were fined a total of £3,765 and ordered to pay TfL's costs of £5,050.
* Infringements by Cable & Wireless occurred on Lambeth Palace Road and Great Eastern Street. They were fined a total of £1,000 and ordered to pay TfL costs of £2,815.

It's understood that BT pleaded guilty to six counts, while C&W pleaded guilty to two offences. TfL claims to have won £20,000 over the past 12 months in similar cases against utility companies for eight separate offences.

Well, goodness me and ‘n and half.

Personally, I’m sick of Openreach vans and trucks of all descriptions being abandoned across pavements near to where I work. A trip to Sainsbury’s at lunch time often ends up more like an assault course as I try and negotiate the never-ending array of cones, bollards, walk-boards (and those barrier ‘hurdle’ type things). Plus, I love the way they raise manhole covers here there and everywhere leaving huge swathes of telephone lines exposed to all and sundry, with no sign of an engineer anywhere. No wonder they’re always having so much copper wire nicked!

What happened to the little red and white striped tents they used to put up over roadworks in the 1990s? Perhaps they went the same way as the Maureen Lipman BT ads.

Still, maybe we should be grateful BT are doing the work.  A lot of utility companies sub-contract their road work to third parties who really have no business operating a jackhammer.  Oh yes: there’s a wide range of cowboys out there with a profound inability to relay tarmac correctly and a rather careful attitude towards pedestrians’ safety.  I’m surprised they’re willing to run the risk of personal injury claims from the more litigious pedestrians out there.

The insurance premiums must be killing them.  They do have insurance, right?

Remember, children: where there’s a drain, there’s a claim.  Be right back


  1. Totally agree with you - health and safety had become important then and now these companies don't give a stuff. The town where I live has big holes in the pavements - lethal. A few years ago they would have been repaired quickly to save the Councils being prosecuted for negligence if someone fell and injured themselves. What's so different now I wonder?


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