Plea for children to stay away from Mersey Gateway construction sites
Local police and the Mersey Gateway construction team are appealing to Halton youngsters to stay away from the project’s busy construction sites.
Merseylink has received a number of reports about children illegally accessing its construction sites in Halton.
There are many safety risks associated with construction sites such as injury from falling objects, falling from scaffolding, getting trapped in deep pits and holes, being hit by site vehicles and being crushed by machinery.
The bridge builder and Cheshire Police are appealing to parents and schools to talk to children about the dangers of playing on or near construction sites.
Hugh O’Connor, General Manager of Merseylink, said: “It’s a sad fact that many children are injured and several die each year after they have trespassed on construction sites across the UK. We don’t want that to happen here. Our teams are using heavy machinery and trucks to move heavy loads, digging deep holes and trenches for foundations, and storing materials on site that could be hazardous. Not only is it dangerous, it’s also a matter for the police. The best way to stay safe is to stay away.”
Merseylink is undertaking additional security checks and has written to Halton schools to ask for support in getting these important safety messages across.
Mersey Gateway volunteers have also been visiting primary schools to deliver presentations, which include important site safety messages.
There are also reports of children throwing logs, branches and stones at construction workers and vehicles from footbridges around the Southern, Central and Daresbury Expressways putting motorists, workers and themselves at risk. These incidents have been reported to the police.
Inspector Barry Brown with Cheshire Police, said: “Anything that takes a driver’s attention away from the road is a distraction. We would urge young people to not throw objects such as stones, logs and branches into the road, because it has the potential to have a catastrophic impact on the driver and other road-users. These seemingly meaningless actions could result in someone losing their life. We would urge parents to reiterate safety messages to their children, reminding them of the dangers their actions could cause.
He added: “Anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated and we will be taking robust action against anyone behaving in this way or illegally accessing Merseylink construction sites.”
Anyone with a concern about any aspect of safety on a Mersey Gateway construction site should contact Merseylink’s project team on firstname.lastname@example.org.