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HSE letter in response to Max Hastings's article

Geoffrey Podger, Chief Executive, Health and Safety Executive responds

The Editor
Daily Mail
Northcliffe House
2 Derry Street
London W8 5TT
letters@dailymail.co.uk

Sir,

Max Hastings [http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1102412/MAX-HASTINGS-Children-banned-carrying-candles-church---safer-isnt-life-supposed-fun.html Children Banned From Carrying Candles...', 29 December 2008] is right to protest at the excuses perpetrated in the name of health and safety. However, he completely misrepresents the position of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Our energies and expertise are concentrated on seeking to reduce real risks by taking proportionate measures. The need for this is clearly shown by last year's 229 deaths and 136,000 serious injuries in the workplace. Like Mr Hastings we condemn 'elf and safety' idiocies but do not expect to be branded an 'iniquitous Stalinist body' for our pains!

Yours faithfully

Geoffrey Podger
Chief Executive. HSE

Updated 2009-04-27