Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Ramsgate Raiders

Reader Chris writes:

A collection of assorted council officers and fire officers, totalling 9, are currently 'raiding' industrial units in Pyson's Road. This crack force entered my premises, introduced themselves and then told me they'd send me a letter regarding self risk assessment. Then they left. Their crucial work just could not have been done by letter alone and I'm very grateful they bothered to tell me in person to expect it. At least I know what I pay my business rates pay for now.

I'm sure there is justification for this somewhere but it is pretty laughable from where I sit.


Anonymous said...

I had a visit from a 'jobsworth' Fire Officer last year to my retail premises who was desparate to find fault, but couldn't.

Clutching at straws, at one point he stood in the middle of the very large store, looking at the two well marked Fire Exits which where both in view.
He then said " What would happen if I was a 'disabled' person in your store and a fire broke out, i'm the maximum distance from each Fire Exit, so what would happen to me?"

I replied "What is your disability?" which I thought was quite a sensible question.
He got annoyed and flustered that someone should even question his statement. He said " What do you mean, what's my disability?!"

I said that I thought the question was obvious, was he in a wheelchair ? On sticks or walking frame? Blind or partially sighted? Deaf or hard of hearing? Mentally impaired? Was a carer with him? I thought it might be relevant to how he might react in this role playing exercise, could he hear the Fire Alarms?, see the smoke? Would he have to be carried? etc etc.

He got annoyed and walked away, without answering my question.

I showed him our company's Fire Risk assesment statement which was a full A4 sheet of writing which he admitted passed the law without any fault, but he said that wasn't enough and that it 'needed' to be at least 16 - 17 pages long. I asked how, if the current one passed the law, I might expand it to this huge volume he insisited on?
All he did was give me a Fire Safety booklet, which was sadly out of date because it showed people smoking in offices, clearing now illegal for some time.

Anonymous said...

Many,many people have made a very nice living out of Health and Safety. In many cases, the people stopping you from doing things are paid a lot more than the people who are keeping you in business. The Health and Safety police are always right because you can never be 100% safe. You can never prove them wrong because the things they say could happen never do; but that's because they're so good at their job (ha ha ha ha). I think it's high time it was all done away with and responsibility for safety was given back to the people who do the job. We should reclaim the word accident as meaning it wasn't anyone's fault and the only things that should find their way to a court of law should be cases of gross negligence.

Anonymous said...

Happily I am able to diagnose the fire officer's disability. Symptomotology: He is unable to understand a question first time yet is full of his own importance.

This is sufficient to designate a case of public sector syndrome.

In these circumstances, in the event of a fire, it would be reasonable of you to assume that he suffers another symptom of the syndrome (the failure to understand instructions first time)

Your immediate action should, therefore, be to propel him towards the fire exit of your choice with a boot up the arse.

However if you left him to die there would be a saving to the public sector pension pot. But I do not think a Judge would sympathise with a manslaughter defence, even with the most compelling economic argument, unless he was satisfied that you had kicked the public sector moron up the arse at least twice.

Footnote Judges are parasitic public sector morons but, according to circumstances, it is sometimes wise not to mention this.

Anonymous said...

Having judged many, many footnotes myself, I'd have to say you've got me all wrong!