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UK cable giant Virgin Media admitted 15 offences related to laying cables in Richmond on Thames, and these included failing to place safety barriers around exposed manholes, or putting up mandatory warning signs that work was taking place.
A London court heard that Virgin Media’s contractors were laying communication cables and the court heard the lives of council workers, who had to halt their work, and motorists, who had to weave around the exposed holes, was put at serious risk.
Virgin Media’s contractors allegedly left a site unprotected and returned to the site the next day to try to carry out the work unlawfully without a permit when they were caught again making the same dangerous mistakes. The court heard that the offences were aggravated by repeated service of fixed penalty notices, written warnings, a meeting with the company and onsite warnings to workers with Virgin Media managers present.
Virgin was fined on each count, totalling £14,300.
A Virgin Media spokesman, in a statement to local press, said: “Our contractors did not comply with the high standards we set for everyone who works on behalf of Virgin Media and we regret, and apologise for, the concern caused to local residents.”