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HSE responds to Daily Mail article

"Pensioner, 85, paid council to remove old TV... and was ordered to drag it outside herself so workmen didn't injure themselves" - Daily Mail, 7 June 2011
Response date:
10 June 2011

Dear Editor,

It isn't health and safety regulations which prevent workers from entering somebody's home to collect an unwanted television. Here is yet another example of the age old excuse being trotted out to cover up the real reasons why a council is unable to pick up the unwanted television. Thousands of delivery companies throughout Britain manage to deliver and remove bulky household goods all the time and do it safely.

Mail readers will be familiar with the seemingly endless examples of "elf 'n' safety" being used as an excuse, or confused with the requirements of insurance companies. This is one long soap opera that we all want to see come to an end.

The Health and Safety Executive does a lot of work to put people in the picture about tackling real risks which threaten serious injury and worse to workers in all manner of occupations - including oil rigs, power stations, chemical plants and construction sites. We hope this sends the right signal about what real health and safety is there to do.

Yours sincerely,

Judith Hackitt
Health and Safety Executive

Updated 2012-01-13