Council appeals for safer driving around bin lorries

11th June 2019

Fermanagh and Omagh District Council is appealing to drivers to drive safely around bin lorries.

Council refuse vehicles have been fitted with 360° CCTV to improve the health and safety for employees and the general public. These cameras also capture and record poor, dangerous and aggressive driving in and around vehicles and Council employees. There is signage on the lorries stating that the CCTV is in operation, in the hope that other road users will heed this warning as they approach or navigate around refuse collection vehicles and crews on their rounds.

In one reported near miss incident, it is understood a car overtook two other vehicles as they waited for the refuse lorry to reverse. Refuse crew members were on the road, assisting with the reverse procedure, when the impatient driver overtook both cars in front and swerved by the refuse crew. This driver was not only putting the lives of the refuse crew at risk, but also those of other road users.

The Council is clear that when refuse crews report near misses, dangerous driving or manoeuvring around their vehicles and employees, the Council will investigate the CCTV footage. Where it is established that a dangerous manoeuvre has occurred, the council will retrieve the vehicle registration and forward it to the PSNI for further investigation and possible prosecution.

Inspector Rory Hoy, of the PSNI, commented:

“Fermanagh and Omagh District Council’s Refuse Teams provide an essential public service, I would urge motorists to respect all road users and afford Refuse Lorries and other similar pick-up, delivery vehicles space on the road. Maintain a safe distance, watch for other motorists and road users around them, in essence be alert and be patient.

Police are working with Fermanagh and Omagh District Council to ensure the safety of not only their employees and vehicles but the wider community. We will be working closely with Council and investigating incidents reported to us.”

Fermanagh and Omagh District Council is committed to trying to reduce the risk of injury and protect their employees and others, by assessing possible risks and ensuring safe work practices are followed, and is appealing to the public to help us in this task. Our refuse crews do a tough job in all weather conditions. Please remember that our crews are emptying your bins and deserve to be able to do this without needing to constantly worry about whether they are going to be hit by a car. We ask all road users to take extra care and attention while approaching and passing refuse crews.