Editors Comment: Spot the danger signs even if they are not there!

There is a building site near our offices. Needless to say, I have been watching the workers there. There is a hard hat policy on the site and most of the construction workers wear them, although not always the right way round.
Editors Comment: Spot the danger signs even if they are not there!
Some don't but that is their lookout, isn't it?

I watched one of the men cutting some wire supports with a angle grinder.

It was quite spectacular. The sparks were flying everywhere. I noticed that he didn't have any eye protection glasses.

But then, if he were to get a piece of metal in his eye, then it would be his problem, wouldn't it?

But I think we all do it.

Photographer Frank Howard and i were on a site recently and we were thrown off it by the health and safety officer because we were not wearing safety boots.

I am not very proud of myself but there did not seem to be any danger as we were only taking photographs.

But there is always danger on a building site.

Bob Towse, the head of health and safety at the HVCA, talks about it in his article on page 14.

For the guys who filmed the YouTube footage, it was obviously a laugh.

But a laugh which could have gone horribly wrong and ended in someone being injured or even killed.

Mrs Braithwaite and I have a narrow boat.

When we are out on the canals, we are conscious of the dangers. In fact, the more we use the canals the more danger there seems to be.

It doesn't seem to stop youngsters - and the not-so-young - jumping across open gates and even jumping from one side of the lock to the other - and doing other equally stupid, dangerous stunts.

I suppose my point is that some see danger and others don't, depending on the circumstances.

People die every day from accidents which could have been avoided.

Building sites are dangerous places, as I said before.

The trick - if I can call it that without detracting from the seriousness of the comment - is not to make the site more dangerous by ignoring the rules.

And I include myself in this!

Paul Braithwaite,
1 April 2007


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