Health and safety is a serious issue, but sometimes you pick up a newspaper and struggle to believe what you read. Of course, if you’ve had an accident at work, you were seriously injured, and you weren’t to blame in any way, this is a health and safety matter of great concern, but where do you draw the line?
Most bizarre health and safety cases: The case of the carnival fancy dress
If you enter these words into a search engine, ‘most bizarre health and safety claims’, you will be greeted with endless links to newspaper articles and blog posts, which list the world’s most extraordinary examples of health and safety legislation. Among the top 5 is the example of carnivals being banned on the grounds that fancy dress costumes carry a healthy and safety risk.
Now, it goes without saying that thorough risk assessment is required for major events and carnivals, but the overwhelming response to this particular case was that this is a clear example of ‘health and safety gone mad’.
For years, people have enjoyed dressing up in fancy dress and celebrating special occasions and traditional or national festivals, and to ban dressing up on the grounds that fancy dress outfits may pose a risk to public safety is controversial to say the least.
Is common sense sufficient to prevent work accidents?
Employment minister, Chris Grayling, called for people and authorities to use their common sense when listing the ‘top 10 most bizarre health and safety bans’ in 2011, but is common sense sufficient to prevent accidents in the workplace, and public place accidents?
In many cases, accidents are caused by human error; a prime example is slipping when you are walking due to losing concentration because you are distracted by reading a text message, or changing the song you are listening to. But, sometimes accidents are caused by external factors, and this is where health and safety guidelines are so important. Workers have the right to carry out their daily tasks in a safe environment, and policies and procedures help to ensure that this is the case; without them, it is highly likely that many more people would experience workplace injuries.
Making a work accident claim
If you’ve been injured at work and it wasn’t your fault, contact Accident Advice Helpline today to discuss your case with an expert personal injury lawyer on 0800 689 0500.
Date Published: December 11, 2013
Author: David Brown