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Red Deer Advocate - Letters to the Editor
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Paving crew’s safety practices could put public at jeopardy

I live on Glendale Boulevard and was observing the work of a paving crew recently with my young son, who was fascinated by the process.

As we discussed what was going on and what they were doing. I noticed some very disturbing and unsafe practices going on with the paving employees. Being employed at a ‘Responsible Care’ company such as NOVA Chemicals, it has become second nature to watch for unsafe and potentially detrimental behaviours. But even untrained, this was blatant disregard for safety in any context.

I observed workers riding along the side of the “wobbly” machine, hanging off the side of it while the driver travelled at a fairly good speed.

Another very disturbing observation was, I don’t think I saw the driver of the compactor not have his cellphone in his hand texting while he was driving up and down the street. I really think the police should sit there and watch them and hand out distracted driving tickets up the ying yang. Perhaps they would stop then? This particular driver was not the only one I observed on their phone while driving the equipment.

Shortly after, I went to take my kids to walk to my car (parked two blocks away from my house until completion) and we were walking along the sidewalk as the before-mentioned guy drove past us. I looked up and saw he was on his cellphone still, looking up and down at his phone alternatively every few seconds as he passed us. I quickly moved my young son to the inside of the sidewalk and encouraged them to walk faster past the area.

I have also sent this letter to the City of Red Deer, the paving company’s main email, and directly to their “Safety Specialist.” I really hope that they will not take my observations lightly and try to adopt a better view of safety practices. Not only to keep their own workers safe and going home every night in the same condition they left in, but other people as well.

Also, little children watch these guys in fascination because what they do is really very cool, so they need to be setting a better example to our children.

Amanda Renner

Red Deer

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