Shropshire Star

Utilities company ordered to pay £38,000 over unsafe Shrewbury roadworks

A utilities company has been ordered to pay more than £38,000 over safety risks from work carried out in a county town.

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Cadent Gas admitted a series of offences at Telford Magistrates Court.

Cadent Gas pleaded guilty to four charges at Telford Magistrates Court on Monday relating to the failure to provide adequate signing and guarding of work on Monkmoor Road in Shrewsbury in May last year – and failure to provide appropriate pedestrian access.

The charges included two counts of 'failing to adequately sign, light and guard part of Monkmoor Road... and failing to place, maintain and operate such traffic signs as were reasonably required for the guidance or direction of persons using the street', on May 9 and 10.

Other charges were 'failing to provide a safe route for pedestrians in line with the permit conditions', and 'failing to comply with a permit condition that a route for pedestrians should be maintained at all times, as no ramps were present'.

The court said it understood the serious nature of the offences in respect of the potential harm, and agreed that such offences should be punished on the basis of protecting the public.

The total penalty for all offences was £34,000, plus costs of £2,022.80, and a victim surcharge of £2,000 – a total of £38,022.80.

The prosecution was brought by Shropshire Council, and Councillor Chris Schofield, the authority’s cabinet member for planning and regulatory services, said: "These offences arose from complaints from the public, and posed a threat to public safety.

"Shropshire Council is responsible for regulating work taking place on our network of roads, and any avoidable breaches that disrupt the flow of traffic, the safety of the network or the safety of the public are taken extremely seriously, as this prosecution shows.

"We hope this prosecution serves as a warning to all utilities companies, and reassures road users and local people that we will take action against companies that break the law."

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