GSD expresses concern at works on Europa Foreshore
The GSD has called on the Gibraltar Government to rectify the ‘environmental and safety failings’ with regards to the works being conducted in tunnels at the Europa Foreshore, part of the Gibraltar Nature Reserve.
In a statement the GSD said it was both disappointed and concerned at the way in which these are being carried out.
It claimed that the works are taking place with little consideration for the sensitivity of the area with piles of rubble being left to accumulate rather than being immediately removed from the site.
The GSD also flagged the “lack of any health and safety consideration” towards both the general public and workers on the site.
According to the Opposition the site, including a ramp construction on the walls high above, can be easily accessed by the public and has not been cordoned off in any way.
“Workers were observed working without any personal protective equipment such as hard hats, eye protection and high visibility vests, and neither do they seem to have been provided with sanitary facilities, all fundamental to enabling such works to take place.”
Trevor Hammond, GSD spokesman for the Environment and Health and safety said: “I visited the site to gather facts last Friday and was disturbed by much of what I saw.”
“It is clear that the manner in which the works are being managed is causing damage to the plants in the reserve, while they might recover in time it is certainly not the example I would expect a Government funded project to set within the nature reserve and suspect that if such works were being carried out privately, the Environment Agency would not have allowed them to proceed in this fashion.”
He added: “It is simply not good enough for Government not to apply the strictest rules to its own projects.”
Mr Hammond further claimed that the site does not appear to adhere to any Health and Safety standards.
“When I visited on Friday there was a lone worker, the tunnels in which he was working were unlit and he was wearing no personal protective equipment,” he said.
“Had any accident occurred there would have been no way for this individual to call for help. Neither were any sanitary facilities apparently provided for the workers on site as such requirements appeared to be dealt with in a most public way.”
“Furthermore, a ladder had been left on the scaffold rampart overhanging the walls high above the site, it was not secured and therefore allowed access onto the scaffolding a short distance from the tourists visiting Europa Point.”
“No fencing had been erected around the site and the whole thing seems to be an accident waiting to happen.”
“I call on Government to take immediate steps to rectify the many failings, both Environmental and Health and Safety that are affecting these works,” Mr Hammond said.