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Author Topic: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?  (Read 4824 times)

bigfella

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #25 on: July 23, 2009, 08:15:22 AM »

I think one of the most famous cases was a McDonald's customer who burnt themselves on a cup of coffee and sued them because she should have been warned that the "Hot Coffee" was actually hot. That is why McDonald's coffee cups come with a warning. I think it all boils down (no pun) to the culture of the individual not being responsible for their own actions. Someone must pay.

Regards David
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sheerline

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #26 on: July 23, 2009, 08:33:03 AM »

Tiger, as a point of interest I always used to wear protective gloves when working with power tools, in fact it was company policy. This changed suddenly one day when it was decided they could actually be detrimental to safety since there had been one or two cases of leather safety gloves being caught in equipment and actually causing injury! This was highlighted the other day when I saw a case of a worker cutting wood using a power saw bench, his glove caught the blade and it dragged his hand further in, removing the end of three fingers. There was also a case of a large slow moving pedestal  drill doing the same thing, the drill bit caught the glove and it began to be wound around the slow moving drill bit with disasterous consequencies for the operator.
I still use gloves for things like grinding as they help avoid burns and frictional loss of skin as this is instant when in contact with an abrasive cutting or grinding wheel but for rotational toothed cutting equipment it may be a different story.
It may be better to actually see where your hands are at all times and has been said, keep body parts firmly behind all saw cutting machines when operating them
Something to think about chaps.
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toesupwa

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #27 on: July 23, 2009, 08:37:25 AM »

..... to the culture of the individual not being responsible for their own actions.

Then the manufacture of such (misused) items should sue the individual involved.

Sue them for misuse of their product, lost revenue (as no doubt the person involved went to the press) and pain and suffering to the company and its employees.

That should sort a few claims out...  >>:-(
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malcolmfrary

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #28 on: July 23, 2009, 10:39:02 AM »

Back in the old common sense days there were plenty of employers/manufacturers who would ride the common sense ticket to the point of abuse, so something needed to be done to balance things a bit.  In some cases, it still does.  Sadly, the balance has swung too far the other way to the point that we are evolving into a race of litigious morons, greatly encouraged by the legal profession who know when they see a gravy train.
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sheerline

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #29 on: July 23, 2009, 02:24:29 PM »

Malcolm, what you've outlined is so typical of Britain nowadays... everything in the extreme and no middle gound to satisfy the majority. You see these forms of extremes everywhere and there is a simple failure to obtain balance in all things.
It's all down to individuals, like in the case of someone suing a coffee shop because they spilled their hot coffee down their lap and claimed it was too hot! The stupidity is generated by a few people and affects the many in an adverse way because money grabbers within our society realise they can earn a few quid out of it.
To sum up, it's greed which is driving the madness!
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tigertiger

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #30 on: July 23, 2009, 02:34:39 PM »

We did manage without H&S and even today there are people who remove guards and safety equipment from machines to speed things up. Like the tragic case of the young man who was cut in half by a plant (bulldozer type) bucket a while back.

There is always people who know better than the rules, and these are the idiots who lose bits, or are killed. Despite the training. Perhaps this is why the H&S at Work Act made safety everybody's responsibility. As a result the instances of these accidents are much less.
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sheerline

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #31 on: July 23, 2009, 03:46:04 PM »

We actually found the plastic guards fitted to the pillar drills  were a real hinderence and in some cases actually prevented us from carrying out some of the tasks. Trying to work around them created situations which did in fact pose certain sisks which we negated by removal. We did however wear safety goggles as the obvious danger posed by certain operations required them.
We were made to wear hard hats at all times when in the workshop. I remember a safety officer having a go at on of the engineers who was working inside a huge diesel powered pump unit (oil industry stuff) This machine was a mass of pipework and the engineer emerged after much difficulty , picked his hardhat up of the workbench and threw it at the safety officer. "If you can wear that hat and get in there with it still on your head, I will comply with the regulation...... now f--k off and leave me alone!!"
There are times when certain guards and regulations are there for benefits other than for those who have to carryout the job in hand.
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Howard Q

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #32 on: July 23, 2009, 04:18:38 PM »

I worked in the oil supply industry, elf & safety was a business all of it's own, people with degrees but no common sense. The early remark about hot water; some systems operate  purposely at such a high temperature that scalds are possible from turning a tap on in a wash basin and placing hands under the flowing water, thus the need for a warning sticker, this I know from our washing facilities. Elf and safety is a lucrative by product of ambulance chasers brigade. H
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sweeper

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #33 on: July 23, 2009, 04:36:25 PM »

Many of us (of a certain age) have had dealings with these elfin safety types.
We had a new one appointed by the council (a female) who was full of how it was to be done, the fact that her ideas ranged from stupid to downright dangerous made no difference. She would be obeyed!
The results were that a lathe (fully protected by microswitches) had to have all the covers drilled, tapped and bolted shut. Now just to change the belt speed became an endurance test. Of course the end product was that the bolts vanished and we went back to normal... until her next yearly examination.
Our foreman fitter in industry (responsible for safety training) summed it up nicely. "If you take safety to the limits you wouldn't get out of bed in case you tripped over the chamber pot and broke your leg". Use common sense. And that was in an industry with high risks but with a very good set of rules for operation. High voltage systems don't give many people a second chance.

Do I really need a warning on the door of a fridge "not to be used as a step"?
Or on an electric iron "that it may get hot"?
I somehow think that I had worked such details out for myself, but of course, there must of been some dimwit who had tried it.

In despair at the state of the whole system.
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Colin H

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #34 on: July 23, 2009, 05:13:28 PM »

Who said " rules and regulations are for the guidance of wise men and the obedience of fools"?

Colin H.
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Malcolm Reade

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #35 on: July 23, 2009, 06:06:54 PM »

The Jeremy Vine show on Radio 2 at lunch time today was educational - They were discussing the merits of putting safety signs on everything (including hot water taps) to the point where nobody takes any notice of them any more, thus probably causing more scalding accidents than before the signs were installed.

The Chairwoman who heads the Health & Safety Executive was on as a guest and was completely pragmatic and very sensible in her approach.  It's NOT the HSE who are responsible for the "'elf and safety" culture that we all have to contend with these days, it's mostly business owners listening to 'Safety Consultants' who advise them on ways of avoiding law suits.

Malc
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ZZ56

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #36 on: July 24, 2009, 07:37:27 AM »

I think one of the most famous cases was a McDonald's customer who burnt themselves on a cup of coffee and sued them because she should have been warned that the "Hot Coffee" was actually hot. That is why McDonald's coffee cups come with a warning. I think it all boils down (no pun) to the culture of the individual not being responsible for their own actions. Someone must pay.

Regards David

Actually, as much as i hate to be 'that guy', the lawsuit revolved around the fact that the woman received SEVERE burns due to the coffee's temperature.  She originally sued for twenty grand, but McDonalds refused to budge and the lawyers kept racking up the total amount called for as their case grew stronger. 

The debate about that lawsuit should be centered around the best way to brew coffee vs. the safety hazards of extremely hot beverages. 
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bigfella

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #37 on: July 25, 2009, 05:14:57 AM »

Actually, as much as i hate to be 'that guy', the lawsuit revolved around the fact that the woman received SEVERE burns due to the coffee's temperature.  She originally sued for twenty grand, but McDonalds refused to budge and the lawyers kept racking up the total amount called for as their case grew stronger. 

The debate about that lawsuit should be centered around the best way to brew coffee vs. the safety hazards of extremely hot beverages. 

What you say is correct about trying to settle out of court with $20k. However the woman in question should take most of the blame. She was a passenger in the back seat of a car that was going through the drive through, she put the coffee between her thighs so she could open the lid and put sugar in it and the car stopped and the coffee spilt over her legs and thighs. How is it McDonald's fault, a coffee in a cup is meant to be held by the hand not the thighs. Coffee is hot and should always be handled with that in mind. Again people seem to think that someone else is to blame for things that happen to them instead of the individual taking responsibility of their own actions.


Not on McDonald's side. But this is a stand out case that proves that if you try and sue and make enough noise for something that is basically an unfortunate accident the law seems to sway on your side. Even if no one is to blame.

Regards David
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tigertiger

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #38 on: July 25, 2009, 06:19:07 AM »

I have a friend from LA and he says the culture there is a bit like this.

If you have an accident involving the 'right' person/other party, you can be financially set up for life.
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bigfella

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #39 on: July 25, 2009, 10:18:00 AM »

TT I agree and unfortunately that type of culture is also happining here in Australia. It would seem to me that there are so many Lawyers in the USA because of this culture. Ambulance chasers are big business in the USA along with insurance companies because of the health situation where there is little or no free health services and if you don't have some type of health insurance you are pretty much on your own.

Regards David
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Ghost in the shell

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #40 on: July 26, 2009, 04:15:12 PM »

firstly, the entire warning notice palava,

when that woman ordered a Hot Coffee, im sure somewhere that there is an indication to what was, I think HOT was the key here! 

here's your sign!!!

Bill Engvill said it nicly "we dont need warning notices on products, just stupid people need signs so we know they're the stupid ones"

desicant powder that comes in hifi boxes, says Do Not EAT, yes?? I wander how that came about.

"gee whats this in the hifi box, I got a Hifi and some Chicklets", here's your sign!

if everyone stood back and thaught just a smidgen we wouldnt need signs. 

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funtimefrankie

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #41 on: July 26, 2009, 07:44:45 PM »

It's not just UK
In a hotel not a nuclear reactor
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Ghost in the shell

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #42 on: July 26, 2009, 07:51:55 PM »

you should read the warning label on white putty plastic filler we use
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The long Build

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #43 on: July 26, 2009, 08:11:05 PM »

You should have read some of the warnings on the Drugs I had to take when I was Very ill ,  I wasn't sure which was going to get me first...   Specially when the chemo treatment I had was called "The C.H.O.P".   %%
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RickF

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #44 on: July 26, 2009, 11:47:56 PM »

Ref  the sign Frankie.... can you come up with a good reason why a pregnant woman SHOULD NOT be warned that cigarette smoke (or anything else) might damage her unborn child?

It's very easy to take the p*** out of these sort of warnings, but looking back at the silicosis, asbestosis. "phossy jaw", lead and mercury poisoning sufferers of the past couple of hundred years, it isn't really that funny!

Rick
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Boy From the Bay

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #45 on: July 27, 2009, 02:50:02 AM »

Ref  the sign Frankie.... can you come up with a good reason why a pregnant woman SHOULD NOT be warned that cigarette smoke (or anything else) might damage her unborn child?

It's very easy to take the p*** out of these sort of warnings, but looking back at the silicosis, asbestosis. "phossy jaw", lead and mercury poisoning sufferers of the past couple of hundred years, it isn't really that funny!

Rick

I think the point being made by Funtimefrankie is valid.
Looking back at silicosis, asbestosis, etc. the risks were unknown and, when discovered, then hidden by industry.

The risks of passive smoking are well known and well publicised. Labeling a hotel does seem 'over the top'. I assume from the wording that this may be a legally required notice in California.

Sorry, but if we follow the same logic, all supermarkets and restaurants should also carry a warning.

Warning
This facility contains foodstuffs that may be harmful to your health.
Including some foods that contain high levels of sugar, saturated fats, or sodium.
There is a risk of diabetes, arterial clogging, and high blood pressure, all of which
CAN KILL
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malcolmfrary

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #46 on: July 27, 2009, 10:41:46 AM »

I vaguely recall that a New Zealand government department tried to ban the use of "dihydrogen monoxide" as it was a substance that harmed many structures by dissolving materials, was the cause of many drownings, was the carrier for many corrosive and/or toxic substances and a huge great list of other "substance crimes" like allowing the proliferation of harmful organisms.
After the campaign was under way, some spoilsport pointed out that dihydrogen monoxide had two hydrogen atoms and one of oxygen, otherwise H2O. {:-{
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Philipsparker

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #47 on: July 27, 2009, 12:45:50 PM »

The Jeremy Vine show on Radio 2 at lunch time today was educational - They were discussing the merits of putting safety signs on everything (including hot water taps) to the point where nobody takes any notice of them any more, thus probably causing more scalding accidents than before the signs were installed.

The Chairwoman who heads the Health & Safety Executive was on as a guest and was completely pragmatic and very sensible in her approach.  It's NOT the HSE who are responsible for the "'elf and safety" culture that we all have to contend with these days, it's mostly business owners listening to 'Safety Consultants' who advise them on ways of avoiding law suits


I heard that interview - it was very interesting and largely confirmed my view that a lot of H&S issues are caused by a combinatuion of ambulance chasing lawyers and badly or untrained people telling other how to do things. H&S is also a very convienent excuse for NOT doing things, usually because "they" will tell you off even though there is no indication who "they" are. Of course the other group who love this stuff are lazy journalists. Take one story where someone has been erroniously told not to do something and make out that the evil authorities are stopping us all from playing conkers etc.


Incuidentally, for more on the McDonalds story, try this web site: http://www.stellaawards.com/ It's very interesting and illuminating.

Phil
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toesupwa

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Re: How did we ever manage without 'elf & safety?
« Reply #48 on: July 27, 2009, 02:19:27 PM »

It's not just UK
In a hotel not a nuclear reactor

And you get similar warnings.... on boxes of bullets here in the USA... "Lead may seriously damage your health".

It doesnt mention you could get shot (or shoot someone) with them... weird...

Oh, and by the way, you can buy liquor in some gun stores too...  {:-{
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