Merry Christmas 2019!
Every year, Emma dresses up as an elf and volunteers for Blist Hill museum. She sees many children hoping to make a good impression with Santa!
Christmas brings its own challenges, but how many of those classic health and safety issues we all hear about every year are true? Inspired by and using the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) festive myth busters, which do you think are “festive thumbs up” (true) or Bah Humbug (false)?
1. You cannot clear snow and ice from pavements yourself – Festive thumbs up or Bah Humbug?
Bah Humbug and advice from Gov.uk says
You can clear snow and ice from pavements yourself. It’s unlikely that you’ll be sued or held responsible if someone is injured on a path or pavement if you’ve cleared it carefully.
2. Workers banned from putting up Christmas decorations in the office- Festive thumbs up or Bah Humbug?
Bah Humbug and the HSE say:
Each year we hear of companies banning their workers from putting up the Christmas decorations in their offices for ‘health and safety’ reasons, or requiring the work to be done by a ‘qualified’ person. Lets be sensible and provide staff with suitable step ladders to put up decorations rather than expecting staff to balance on wheelie chairs.
3. All Indoor Christmas lights don’t need a portable appliance test (PAT) every year – Festive thumbs up or Bah Humbug?
Festive thumbs up and advice from HSE says:
Lots of companies waste money in the false belief they need to test their Christmas lights annually, or even don’t put them up at all! By following a few sensible precautions, such as checks by the user for obvious signs of damage, every workplace can switch on safely and sparkle!
4. Children are banned from throwing snowballs (if it snows?) – Festive thumbs up or Bah Humbug?
Bah Humbug and the HSE say:
Every year we hear inaccurate stories about children who aren’t allowed to throw snowballs, and swimmers who can’t take their traditional winter dip in the local lake – all this in the name of health and safety. We are expected to have snow this Christmas, so lets get out there and have a snowball fight!
5. Health and safety doesn’t prevent people putting coins in Christmas puddings – Festive thumbs up or Bah Humbug?
Festive thumbs up and what the HSE say:
Finding a coin in your pudding on Christmas day – it’s a tradition that’s lasted for more than 500 years and is said to grant you a good luck wish for the coming year. However, killjoys have been stirring up trouble saying it’s too risky to put coins inside puddings for ‘health and safety’ reasons. Just be careful when taking a bite of pud!
If we had one wish, it would be to stamp out the health and safety Scrooges who try to dampen the Christmas spirit.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone!
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