Health and Safety Gone Mad

I do wonder if health and safety has gone too far these days.

When I was working, as an Engineer, I was staggered by the fact that we had to have signs next to taps, telling people that they could contain hot water, and signs by the river side, warning us of deep water.

As children we grew up long side rivers, Electricity and hot water, but got on with life, we never needed some over paid office worker to tell us the obvious.  I would have thought it obvious that electricity could give you a shock or kill you, so why do we need signs next to sockets, or outside electrical substations etc, warning of electrocution, or danger of shock.

I now wonder what has happened to this state, because people are no longer able to think for themselves, and we often hear of people complaining these days, of the nanny State, but is it clear that these same people are not taking responsibility into their own hands.

We have gone from an intelligent and caring nation, to one where it's easier to blame others, and sue someone else, rather than using your own common sense, and this is quite frightening.

When I was younger you got on with life, watched what you were doing, and made sure you were safe, if you had an accident, then you held your hands up and admitted it was your own fault, and never blamed anyone else for our own stupidity, but these days it appears that it's everyone else's fault, and not our own, so what has gone wrong.

I firmly believe that it's health and safety to blame these days along with Insurance companies, because I think it has gone too far.

These days I have problems walking, because of co-ordindination, eyesight and balance issues, and the fact but I don't seem to be able to lift my feet as high as I used to, which for some reason means that I seem to catch my foot on the paving slabs, and this causes me to trip. But I don't blame the council etc, because I know it's my problem not anyone else's.

We had an occasion recently when we ask the council to check the footpath outside our property, because it was uneven. Someone came along one day, to look at the problem, and then asked if we were going to sue them. Wife's response was, that she was simply concerned that I may trip, on the uneven surface. We were then told, that to make it dangerous, any hole in a footpath would needed to be more than 25mm deep, before it could be repaired, or classed as a safety concern.

The odd thing was, that they came along the following day and dug up around 50mm, before resurfacing it again. So obviously, because my wife had asked kindly and had pointed out my problems, they had thought it out properly.

This left us wondering how many people are suing the council's, for uneven footpaths, because they don't watch where they are going these days.

 However, when it comes to people with neurological illnesses, like dementia etc, I think health and safety is a mine field, and I can't in all honesty see how anyone who does not have our illness, can tell us what to do, because they don't understand our reasoning.

I know from my own problems, that things change so fast, and when your coordination and thinking has gone astray, you become a liability at times, even in the house.

One moment everything is clear in my mind, and then the next moment, I am a liability, but that's my brain, and no one can tell me how to look after my own health and safety, because it simply does not work that way

A simple thing like turning round sharply, can end up with a fall, because my body turns, while the feet stay fixed to the floor

But we are living in this life, and must cope with the impossible at times, and no matter how many signs are put in place, you don't always recognise or see them

Over the last two years, I have been seen by a physiotherapist for my balance issues, but they simply cannot take on board that my brain simply switches off at times, and I do something totally unexpected, or silly without even thinking.

Its not deliberate, in fact as my wife will tell anyone, I get very annoyed with myself when I walk into something, or totally miss a step, but that's life

Furniture in our house has been placed so that I can grab it if needed, but sometimes, I either walk into it or miss it completely. I guess this is to do with judgement and co ordination issues, but its my brain and I have to accept it and live with it.  

That does not mean that we need someone leading us around 24 hours a day, we just need to be more aware of our surroundings, and that comes down to living in our own confirm zone.

I have been to many places in the past, including many new buildings which have been a liability, as far as health and safety are concerned, especially where people with neurological illnesses are involved.

One place in London recently, had different sized stairs, and that was very confusing and highly dangerous, especially if your brain and eyesight are not working as they should be. Yet this building was being used for a dementia meeting, and I was left staggered, by the fact that this was being used by a group who are supposed to be dementia friendly.

This leads me to think, a bit more time and thought should be spent on the needs of those with neurological illnesses etc, and less time spent on complete idiots, who are just out to find an excuse to sue someone.

No wonder insurance costs are going up, when we consider this sue culture.

Perhaps they should live in our shoes for be day or so, then they might start to think what they are doing rather than blaming others 


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