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Daily Mail: Richard Littlejohn's flippant approach to 'elf'n'safety'

Geoffrey Podger, Chief Executive, Health and Safety Executive responds

The Editor
Daily Mail
Northcliffe House
2 Derry Street
London W8 5TT

2 September 2008

Dear Sir,

Richard Littlejohn's flippant approach to 'elf'n'safety' is not only inaccurate, but trivialises a serious issue. There are no health and safety laws banning ladders. The Work at Height Regulations were introduced in 2005 and since then the use of ladders for minor work at building sites has continued legally and safely.

More importantly, since the regulations came into force the number of fatal and major injuries caused by falls from height have decreased consistently. It should also be remembered that ladders continue to account for around one third of fatal and serious fall from height injuries, costing the British economy more than £60 million a year. We make no apologies for introducing measures to prevent these unnecessary injuries and deaths, and the human suffering that goes with them.

Yours faithfully,
Geoffrey Podger

Chief Executive
Health and Safety Executive
Redgrave Court
Merton Road
Merseyside L20 7HS

Updated 2011-11-07