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Times article: "Courtesy can damage your health"

Geoffrey Podger, HSE's Chief Executive, responds

Dear Sir

I'm sure many people would agree with Benedict Nightingale's description of travelling on our busy public transport ("Being polite could damage your health. Why give up your seat?" 27 February). Unfortunately, promoting general politeness on public transport isn't part of our remit. This seems another example of spurious "'elf 'n' safety" which does nothing to help with the real health and safety issues where we need to remain vigilant.

Geoffrey Podger
Chief Executive
Health and Safety Executive
2 Southwark Bridge
London SE1 9HS

Updated 2010-05-10