Van Design for Safer Roadside Working

Clarks Vehicle Conversions and Carnell Support Services have developed a welfare van that will improve the safety of road workers on motorway lane closure sites.

The two companies worked together to design a van layout that makes it possible for operatives to move between the mid-cab and the rear of the van without having to leave the vehicle directly into the ‘safety zones’ next to live traffic.

Carnell specialises in maintaining and supporting infrastructure and communications across the UK’s major trunk road network, with many of their staff working in challenging conditions.

They chose Clarks Vehicle Conversions for this project because the 30 year-old company has a long-established reputation in designing and building bespoke van conversions to a high standard.

The Mercedes Sprinter welfare van has an internal partition wall with a door to separate the mid-cab from the rear so both areas are accessible without the need to leave the van (as show in the van schematic below).

It will be used by a team of specialists at Carnell who look after drainage systems. Their operators will be able to move from the mid-cab housing an ‘office and welfare area’ to the ‘equipment and exit area’ at the rear.

If required, operatives can also exit the vehicle via the rear doors into the middle of a lane closure instead of against the safety zone and next to live traffic.

Martin Parry, Innovations and Business Development Director at Carnell said: “This is a major breakthrough in making lane closure sites safer, not only for our workforce but for road workers across the industry.

The van also has purpose-built storage areas for Carnell’s specialist equipment and two different electrical outputs to power the survey equipment and an on-board computer.

The van conversion is covered under Clarks’ National Small Series Type Approval for welfare vehicles.

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