Thursday, 22 October 2009

Health and Safety - are we going mad?

I keep wondering when we will go too far when worrying about health and safety. When are we going to stop doing things because of the dreaded H&S worry?

Already lots of staff are nervous or even avoid doing things such as trips, practicals etc because of this. (Having said that, I would, of course, never want anyone to get hurt in schools). But how far can H&S go?
We have all read health and safety stories in the media where the world seems to have gone mad - there are some really barmy examples, but surely there must be a balance somewhere.
At times I work in a large number of environments full of very intelligent adults - do they really need a huge yellow safety notice on the freezer saying that it is the scene of a low temperature? It's a freezer, it has ice in it - they know it's cold! These intelligent adults learnt that inside freezers are cold some time ago, probably before infant school, before they got their GCSE's (or 'O' levels), before their first, second and for all I know third degrees!
I can't help but compare it to a vocational school I visited in the Netherlands earlier this year. The technology room, although locked when empty, stored the craft knives on pegboard on the wall, without being locked away. Whilst they 'counted the knives in and out' at the start and ends of lessons, they had not lost one for years.
It's just a comment but the truly 'comprehensive' range of teenage students at this school realised that they were sharp and potentially dangerous without a notice telling them so.
It's a funny old world!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Only in the UK. We are going slowly mad. Soon no one will be able to do anything without a warning booklet.

Essays said...

Hi,
yes i agree with you. Soon no one will be able to do any thing without it.