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 Health & Safety - taking things too far?

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Wolf
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Number of posts : 62
Age : 47
Location : Solihull, England
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Health & Safety - taking things too far?   Tue Jul 22, 2008 5:25 am

Do you think that the Health & Safety laws go too far in protecting people from injury? Or do you think they are right to protect people from their own ignorance and stupidity? Should there be an ability to "opt-out" of Health & Safety laws for those that wish to pursue a dangerous idea? Is Health & Safety a case of the "nanny state"? Or is it a case of saving the NHS from treating unnecessary accidents?

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Nick

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Number of posts : 102
Age : 47
Location : Birmingham, UK
Registration date : 2008-07-23

PostSubject: Re: Health & Safety - taking things too far?   Thu Jul 24, 2008 6:42 am

I have to admit that when I see many of the constraints that the Health and Safety laws cover then I think that they are taking things too far, and who on earth would be stupid enough to need telling not to do those kinds of things. But then I see the instances of people being prosecuted under these rules and I realise that there really are a lot of really stupid people that need to be told not to do things which anyone with an ounce of sense can see is dangerous.

However, I do think that there should be an opt-out option, where someone signs a document of some kind that states that they have been warned of the risks, yet accept responsibility for the danger that they know they are putting themselves into (as long as they aren't putting anyone else into danger in the process). That way we stand a chance of some natural selection where those stupid enough to do these actions can be culled and taken out of the gene pool by their own hands.

When you see that children aren't allowed to play conkers in the school playground, in case a conker breaks and flies into someone's eye, or seeing some kid on their pushbike wearing so many pads that they can't even walk properly, I do think "where's the danger gone?" we can't put everyone into such bubbles, we have to allow some risk in life in order to allow people to learn from their mistakes.

OK, so I accept that some warning is needed to let people know the risk they are putting themselves in, but we should still be allowed to take those risks once we have been warned of them. We have noted the risk, now let us get on with it please?

If a few more people get killed from these accidents, then so be it. I hate to sound harsh, but we are living in an overpopulated world as it is, with life spans expanding more and more, so we do need to have someone dying now and then. I can here the reply "you wouldn’t be saying that if it was your child that died though" coming, and you are probably right, the difference is that I would have taught my child to have more sense than to do that kind of thing. If they then decided that they were going to go ahead and risk their lives like that, despite knowing better and being warned, then that's their decision (provided they are over 18 ) and my job to prevent (if they are under 18 ), not the governments.

We can't rely on the government to do everything for us, and blame the government if accidents happen, We have to take responsibility for ourselves sometimes and accept that we take some risks in life and if they go wrong then we have no one else to blame except ourselves.
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Mike



Number of posts : 56
Location : Birmingham
Registration date : 2008-08-19

PostSubject: Re: Health & Safety - taking things too far?   Wed Aug 20, 2008 9:58 pm

As you hint at, Nick, the increase in health and safety awareness is part of the 'blame someone else' culture which we've got. I'm sure many organisations have stringent health and safety policies mostly to avoid the threat of litigation if someone comes a cropper on their premises.
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Nick

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PostSubject: Re: Health & Safety - taking things too far?   Sat Aug 23, 2008 12:49 am

So how about the option to sign a waver form, then do whatever you want?
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Mike



Number of posts : 56
Location : Birmingham
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PostSubject: Re: Health & Safety - taking things too far?   Sat Aug 23, 2008 11:08 am

I agree that waiver forms are a good idea in many circumstances, as long as they don't allow organisations to get away with criminal negligence. Some people would be reluctant to sign them, though, if they thought "if I sign this, then I won't be able to get compensation"!
Also, have you noticed that you don't get many public information films on telly any more? You know the sort - the ones that used to fill up advert breaks warning kids not to swim in flooded quarries, or reminding drivers to slow down when they see horseriders on country roads. I think this is because the culture has sadly shifted too far away from taking individual responsibility for our actions (or parents taking more responsibility for their children, as you point out).
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Mike



Number of posts : 56
Location : Birmingham
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PostSubject: Re: Health & Safety - taking things too far?   Sun Aug 31, 2008 8:03 pm

By the way, Nick and Wolf, your avatars clearly breach health and safety requirements because the people on those motorbikes aren't wearing crash helmets or appropriate clothing. I suggest that you change these irresponsible pictures at once and start setting a good example! tongue
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