The La Praz site, in the municipality of Saint André in Maurienne, for the excavation of the base tunnel for the Lyon-Turin railway line, opens with a commitment to safety at work. This is the second construction site in France dedicated to the final work on the tunnel through which the trains will pass.
Today, the group of companies that won the contract to excavate the 23 km of the twin-tube between Saint-Martin-la-Porte and Modane installed themselves on the site, formally committing to comply with the Mission-S protocol, which reinforces and systematises the supervision of safety at work on the construction sites, binding the various players to ensure the protection of workers using all available tools and technologies.
As part of this new construction site opening in France (Operational Sites 6 and 7), the consortium composed of VINCI Construction Grands Projets (contractor) / DODIN CAMPENON BERNARD / VINCI Construction France TP Lyon / WeBuild, is in charge of continuing the excavation of the tunnel between Saint-Martin-la-Porte and Modane.
During these months, the companies are setting up on the site and beginning the activities necessary to prepare the site for the excavations that will begin with the traditional method (hydraulic breaker and/or explosive) on various fronts from mid-2022. In particular, in this phase, the companies will assemble the site structures and install the equipment and materials necessary for excavation, carry out all the checks on the ground and underground, in the La Praz tunnel, which are useful for completing the executive studies for the various works planned, ventilation and safety in the tunnel, etc. At the same time, the group is defining the specific characteristics of the tunnel boring machines. In fact, each TBM is built ad hoc for the excavation for which it is intended. On this site it is planned to use three tunnel boring machines, while the more geologically complex sections will be excavated using the traditional method. The La Praz safety site, communication branches every 333 metres between tunnels, technical rooms, niches and tunnels for operation and safety will also be built.
In total, approximately 65 months of work are planned, costing EUR 1.43 billion and employing more than 1,000 workers. The territories of the municipalities of Saint-Martin-la-Porte, Saint-Michel-de-Maurienne, Orelle, Saint André, Villargondran and Saint-Julien-Mont-Denis are affected.
The Pact for Safety at Work
The agreement signed between the public promoter TELT and the companies, within the framework of the Code of Ethics and the “Sustainability and Integrity Pact of the Lyon-Turin Companies”, entails the involvement of all the actors operating on the construction sites (the contracting authority, the Works Management, the Safety Coordinators, the companies, the sub-contractors and the self-employed workers) in the sharing and pursuit of the same objectives: to avoid fatal/serious accidents and occupational pathologies during the construction of the work and to reduce accidents considered as minor as possible.
The starting point of the document is that security must be a shared responsibility, a dimension in which everyone must play their part for the good of all.
In concrete terms, the Pact consists of 5 commitments made by the parties: constant training and information for the improvement of health, safety and comfort conditions at work and for the promotion of a safety culture at the worksite; shared assessment of worksite performance, also through the collection of data for performance monitoring; control of work sites to monitor events such as near misses, accidents and injuries with a careful and in-depth analysis of the causes of the events to prevent their recurrence; implementation of innovative technologies and new work solutions to improve health and safety at work; collaboration, when required, in the organisation of inter-lot emergency management plans.