There has been a recent temporary traffic management safety alert issued in relation to workers on foot breaching safety behind a Truck Mounted Attenuator (TMA). The incident described below occurred during one such phase of the traffic management project where asphalt works were being undertaken, requiring the deployment of a Truck Mounted Attenuator (TMA) to protect workers and create a safe working zone alongside live traffic.
On 2nd March 2023 at approximately 8:35am, a subcontractor worker breached safety and traffic management essentials by walking behind a Truck Mounted Attenuator (TMA) as it was deployed alongside live traffic in a reduced 80km zone, the posted speed was 100km/h.
The TMA was deployed for approx. 30mins whilst asphalt works were being undertaken. After the TMA arrived at the work location upon request and deployed (set up) the subcontractor worker, without warning or communication, walked directly behind the TMA to move approximately 9 bollards (one by one) from roadside, back toward work area before requesting TMA to move back.
During this time worker would have encroached more than 0.5m from live traffic edge (unprotected).
A short time later a worker who had been tasked with clean up or housekeeping of the work area alongside the TMA (safe-work side) when they have spotted a piece of metal beside the road of a live traffic lane. In an attempt to remove a potential ‘hazard’, the worker has stepped out directly behind the TMA and used a broom to extend further to retrieve metal from roadside before stepping back into work area (in safe location).
The incidents were reported to Traffic Supervisor and TGA subcontractor-supervisor via phone – works suspended.
Image showing approximate position of TMA and proximity to traffic
Type of TMA in use by the project
Please note that these are generic actions for all to consider in relation to this critical risk (and is not reflective of this specific incident):
- Ensure that teams working near live traffic maintain effective communication and are aware of their surroundings at all times.
- Ensure that project specific documentation (safety plans, safety procedures and Take 5s) cover the risks and controls around working near live traffic environments.
- Ensure that there is regular monitoring of sub-contractors and their traffic management planning by a duly nominated person to ensure compliance around critical risk settings.
These safety alerts raise the awareness of breaching safety protocols near live traffic and the significant risks associated and the severe consequences. It jeopardises the safety of workers themselves, who are exposed to the dangers of moving vehicles and the potential for accidents or collisions.
Workers breaching safety behind a Truck Mounted Attenuator (TMA) put themselves at risk of being struck by passing vehicles, leading to severe injuries or even fatalities.
Additionally, such breaches also pose a threat to the safety of motorists on the road. Sudden and unexpected movements by workers near live traffic can result in driver distraction, swerving, or rear-end collisions, potentially causing harm to both workers and innocent road users.
It is crucial for traffic management workers to maintain effective communication, adhere to project-specific safety plans, and regularly monitor subcontractors to ensure compliance with critical risk settings.
By doing so, we can prioritise the safety of workers, protect the public, and maintain the success of the project.
AusQ Training offer a range of courses that assist and educate your workforce in the traffic management or construction industry, in Bunbury, Perth and all over WA – to view our range of public training courses [click here] or view our calendar here.
Make a time to chat to one of our Customer Support Team members [here] to discuss your traffic management training needs.