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News from the UK Civils Industry 20th February 2019

Posted by: Melonie Debenham
Industry News

Smart Closure System improves safety for road workers

The Intellicone Safelane real-time incursion warning system celebrates its 4th anniversary this month and is now widely available for use across the Strategic Road Network. Since its launch it has been utilised on over 4,000 sites and the benefits to contractors and highway authorities across the UK have been significant.

The system’s primary function is to instantly warn workforce of temporary traffic management breaches. The result is that fewer traffic management operatives are deployed and placed in harm’s way, making roads a safer place to work and projects more cost effective.

A recent Highways England study concluded that “the warning functionality of Intellicone will provide a much faster and more reliable means of informing road workers of a vehicle incursion than traditional methods (e.g. mobile phone/text-based broadcast message to others working in the area). The benefits of this type of system can provide significant benefit to the mitigation of all types of incursion risks.”

More than 1,700 vehicle incursions were recorded in 2018 and they pose the greatest risk to road workers across the UK, with fatalities not uncommon. Roger Poeth, Managing Director of HRS, commented: “Our systems are easy to use and have a proven track record in enabling safer sites whilst also helping to improve efficiency and road user experience.”

Smart Closure Systems across the UK compliment the government’s £15m investment in smart motorways. The team at Navartis have extensive experience placing senior professionals across smart motorway projects (SMPs), including projects on the A14, M1, M6 and M20 and continue to work on upcoming highway schemes across the UK. Full story.

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Yorkshire Water tenders £650m work packages

Yorkshire Water has gone out to tender with two major contracts for work with a combined value of £650 million.

Initial funding (worth an estimated £400m) looks set to cover a wide range of projects from infrastructure construction, renewal, refurbishment and replacement works for clean and waste networks, including pipe lining, sewage investigation procedures, mains laying and emergency works.

A second set of funding worth £250m invites emphasis on customer-focussed infrastructure works to cover minor construction, renewal and refurbishment works. Services will include meter installations, proactive deep digs and repairs and servicing.

The initial period for both contracts is for four years with the potential to double-down with a four-year extension dependent on performance. But contractors will have to act fast: the deadline for receipt of tenders and requests is 14th March 2019. Full story.


Government shoulders the risk in outsourcing revamp

The UK Government is radically overhauling its approach to outsourcing in order to take the weight off contracting firms. The move is a direct response to the collapse of contractor Carillion who went into liquidation in 2018. 
The government plans to pay more attention to risk-allocation, placing the weight on those best able to manage it. The hope is that this will promote a healthier and more secure marketplace: “Our new measures will improve how the government works with industry and provide better public services for people across the country,” explained Cabinet Office Minister Oliver Dowden. He went on to explain that the move will ensure projects get off to the best possible start: “A more considered approach to risk allocation will make us a smarter, more attractive client to do business with.”
The government has assured the marketplace that the plans will allow them to act more swiftly when issues arise. Full story.

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