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Can't Save Lives For Safety's Sake

Health and safety laws are stopping us from saving lives, fire chief says - Scotsman.com News


THE head of Scotland's largest fire brigade has said health and safety law is preventing firefighters from saving lives.
Strathclyde fire chief Brian Sweeney said current health and safety rules were having the "cumulative effect of putting firefighters in a position where they are more fearful of the legislation than they are of risking their lives".
Mr Sweeney's warning follows a fatal accident inquiry into the death of a woman whose rescue was delayed for safety reasons.
Alison Hume, a 44-year-old mother of two, died in July 2008 after falling down a 60ft mineshaft. She was trapped for six hours, and died of a heart attack.
Firefighters on the scene were willing to attempt a rescue, but were told they were not allowed to use their equipment to help members of the public.

I gather the equipment referred to was only for use to save firefighters..
HSE actually understands the risks that firefighters have to take and are probably not the problem, it is the moustachioed little man in a squeaky clean Hi-Viz who "interprets" Health and Safety on the spot that is the problem.

Comments

Commissar in all but name?

With any luck the Fatal Accident Enquiry will severely criticise Strathclyde Fire over the incident, must be the most shameful day in the brigade's history though there were also the drownings on Loch Awe where the brigade had moved their rescue boat from Oban to somewhere around Glasgow with H&S again being the reason. I think Sweeney has been in favour of merging Scotland's fire brigades and he might be in line to get the top job so wonder if he is trying to improve his image?

"HSE actually understands the risks that firefighters have to take and are probably not the problem, it is the moustachioed little man in a squeaky clean Hi-Viz who "interprets" Health and Safety on the spot that is the problem."

Uh, no. Many HSEs ARE that "little man who 'interprets' H&S on the spot". They're narrowminded control freaks who exist for no other purpose than to make rules about what other people can (or more frequently can not) do.
That's why they chose that profession, to lord it over others with impunity in a job where their word is literally law (anything decided by an HSE and adopted by the agency automatically becomes law, no parliamentary action required).
Many of them probably understand perfectly that the rules they invent are idiotic, but they don't care. Their mindset is simply "if there's no rule against it, and it's not mandated, there's something wrong and a rule should be created".

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