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Date: Wed, 19 May 1999 00:46:52 +0000
From: SchNEWS (
To: SchNEWS Subscribers (
Subject: SchNEWS 211, 14 May 1999


The construction firm Tarmac has been breaking such different sorts of records - Roy Castle would be proud. They recently scooped four of the government and construction industry's 1999 'Quality in Construction' major awards, including that in the environment category. Which may raise hollow laughs from people in the Bestwood area of Nottinghamshire, if not as hollow as the yawning quarry Tarmac intends to inflict on the forest there.

The judges displayed an even more finely honed sense of irony in awarding a Tarmac subsidiary the Safety award, lauding their 'degree of absolute commitment [which] is fantastic', and reflecting the 10(!) awards Tarmac companies have this week received from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents. Now, this ain't going to raise even a hollow laugh (or much else) from any of the 13 Tarmac employees killed at work over the last decade. And that's not just a rogue statistic; to place it in context, note that Tarmac was convicted in that time of more Health and Safety offences than any other UK firm, almost twice as many as the next worst offender. (Let's take a quick glance at the cost benefit analysis: the company received fines of, on average, just over 3 grand for a seriously injured employees, just over 11 grand for a death; while such skimping on H&S considerations may have contributed to their truly fantastic average annual profits of £184 million). That is a serious record.

Perhaps just as well they didn't employ Roy Castle, who died before Tarmac could get their hands on him.

road protests 1999   |   road protests (current)   |   movement links