Waste and recycling – keeping it safe at Christmas and beyond

Christmas is a time for giving and receiving, eating and drinking, and getting together with friends and family. It’s also the time when we throw away or recycle the most rubbish.

Statistics show that over the festive season the UK creates 30 per cent more waste than usual. Around one billion Christmas cards are thrown out each year, along with 277,000 miles of wrapping paper and 13,350 tonnes of glass.

Once all that rubbish has been consigned to dustbins and recycling crates, it’s the job of the nation’s fleet of waste disposal vehicles to deal with the extra work load. Manoeuvring these hefty vehicles is particularly hazardous over the Christmas and new year period when there is greater congestion in residential and commercial areas. The added volume of waste can require more collections, which increases the potential for accidents or collisions with other road users and pedestrians.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has reported that fatal incidents in the waste and recycling industry are ten times the national average, making this sector dangerous to work in – not just on dark, icy December days, but throughout the year.

Risks are ever-present on public roads and in waste and recycling depots. They include:

  • People falling in or being dragged into the hopper
  • Reversing accidents due to the rear blind spot
  • Collisions with people or stationary objects caught in the nearside blind spot
  • People, particularly children, being hit by the front of the vehicle due to the front blind spot
  • Damage to parked vehicles
  • Collisions with other traffic

To minimise risks, the HSE has issued a number of recommendations. In relation to the danger posed by reversing waste vehicles, it advises that reversing manoeuvres should be eliminated or reduced wherever possible. Where backing-up is unavoidable, vehicles should be fitted with reversing aids including CCTV, detectors and alarms.

Safety solutions such as these have been developed by Brigade Electronics’ team of skilled engineers for decades. We’re proud to be a global market leader in vehicle safety systems, offering innovative, state-of-the-art products that have been rigorously tested to the very highest standards.

So how can we help keep our streets and workplaces safer during the festive season and beyond? Our products include:

  • Mobile Digital Recording – recording device to capture CCTV images, event data and promote driver best practice. Our latest models have improved 4G connectivity and real-time GPS tracking
  • Ultrasonic Obstacle Detection  – sensor system that detects objects, cyclists and people in the vehicle’s path, providing audible warnings to the driver
  • White Sound Reversing Alarms – our unique bbs-tek® White Sound® reverse alarms create a ‘ssh ssh’ sound which is gentle on the ear and dissipates quickly, meaning the alarm can only be heard in the danger zone. Noise pollution is also kept to a minimum, which is especially important in residential areas during the holiday season
  • Radar Obstacle Detection – designed to protect people and objects in blind spots, these heavy-duty radar systems can significantly reduce the risk of accidents
  • Backeye®360 – compatible with our MDR digital recorders, this intelligent camera monitoring system is designed to assist low-speed manoeuvring by providing the driver with a complete surround view of the vehicle in real time

If you’d like detailed information about these Brigade innovations, or any other of our vehicle safety products, don’t hesitate to get in touch on 01322 420300, or via our online contact form.

Finally, as 2017 draws to a close, we would like to send season’s greetings to all our customers across the globe. We look forward to working with you in 2018, as we continue our mission to make public roads and worksites safer for all.