• layman (unregistered)

    A bit more seriously, some months ago I overheard a radio broadcast. Some sort of discussion about homeland security and terror craze &c. What got my attention:

    "Let's consider the real threats for a moment. Far and away the most common reason for premature death is suicide: we've got like 14,000 of these. Next come the so-called household accidents at about 8000 casualties in the past year -- 300 of which somehow managed to stumble on level ground. Traffic accidents account for slighly over 4000 deaths."

    (These numbers refer to Germany, and anyway, I can't recall the exact figures (except the 300), so I just made them up. They should at least be on the right order of magnitude, though)

    Life is filled with one-in-a-million risks.

    ...and with millions of people trying their luck, everyday, some are bound to strike really really bad luck.

  • Watson (unregistered) in reply to Joel
    Comment held for moderation.
  • Pim (cs) in reply to mpbk
    mpbk:
    We had a Safety Guy who would write weekly emails about how to be safe. One weekend, some random guy in the next town over was killed by a train while walking his dog. The following Monday, Safety Guy wrote an email to all employees about how to be safe around trains.
    The Learning: • Dogs are dangerous

    The Recommendations:

    • Get rid of dog
  • Bosshog (unregistered) in reply to Anonymous
    Anonymous:
    Oh my God, I feel a sneeze coming on and there are obstacles literally ALL AROUND ME! I need a health and safety officer NOW!!
    LOL!
  • Bosshog (unregistered) in reply to IronFist
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  • The Orc (unregistered)

    OMG.

    Some of these guys ought to work here, where there is some real shit to deal with. I'm a PhD student in Organic Chemistry, meaning I deal with solvents, known dangerous chemicals, and totally unknown chemicals, on a daily basis. And there was zero instructions when I started. I mean, I wasn't even told to use safety glasses, or where it's safe or unsafe to store chemicals. You have to pick up everything from older PhD:s as you go along. Nobody in this workplace even knew that a chemistry lab is legally a forbidden zone to pregnant women until a girl looked it up for herself (yes, I've seen a woman doing chemistry experiments when she was so far pregnant she could hardly reach her fumehood over her belly). The one safety officer we have is constantly busy with other things, and only comes in from now and then to tell us not to store chemical waste in the lab. Well, rather there than in the office. There's simply no approved place for it. And the cheapskates bought household freezers for the chemicals instead of proper ones, meaning they stink like crazy everytime you open them. Enough to give you a headache. And... and... and...

    But that's a totally different WTF. Thanks for the ranting space, people! I feel a bit better now.

  • Addison (unregistered) in reply to Bosshog
    Comment held for moderation.
  • Jim (unregistered) in reply to Merijn

    I am an Englishman living and working in the Netherlands, and I despite the fact I always despised the stupidity of British safety regs, I have been frankly shocked at the lack of any in Holland.

    The Dutch mentality seems to be "if you hurt yourself, tough - don't do it again" (unless you were on a pushbike and ran into a car, in which case the driver gets the death penalty or something).

    An example... after my interview 2 years ago, I was in a bar with the boss. On top of the bar was an electric fan, plugged into an antiquated unearthed socket. Below the fan was a sink full of water. At the sink was a barman, with his hands in the water washing glasses. A customer knocked the fan over (this is absolutely a true story) and the barman calmly pulled a hand out of the water (didn't even bother to use both), caught the fan, shook his head good naturedly, and REPLACED IT ON THE BAR EXACTLY WHERE IT HAD BEEN!! The fan was on by the way.

    This made a very lasting impression on me.

    I am still in the Netherlands though, and to date have not suffered any crippling injuries.

  • Anon (unregistered) in reply to The Orc
    The Orc:
    OMG.

    Some of these guys ought to work here, where there is some real shit to deal with. I'm a PhD student in Organic Chemistry, meaning I deal with solvents, known dangerous chemicals, and totally unknown chemicals, on a daily basis. And there was zero instructions when I started. I mean, I wasn't even told to use safety glasses, or where it's safe or unsafe to store chemicals. You have to pick up everything from older PhD:s as you go along. Nobody in this workplace even knew that a chemistry lab is legally a forbidden zone to pregnant women until a girl looked it up for herself (yes, I've seen a woman doing chemistry experiments when she was so far pregnant she could hardly reach her fumehood over her belly). The one safety officer we have is constantly busy with other things, and only comes in from now and then to tell us not to store chemical waste in the lab. Well, rather there than in the office. There's simply no approved place for it. And the cheapskates bought household freezers for the chemicals instead of proper ones, meaning they stink like crazy everytime you open them. Enough to give you a headache. And... and... and...

    But that's a totally different WTF. Thanks for the ranting space, people! I feel a bit better now.

    Seriously, you shouldn't have got as far as a Ph.D without knowing you need to wear safety goggles. We taught that in Chem 101 labs and yes, I was a safety goggle Nazi with the students in my lab. Having said that, when we weren't teaching and were in our own lab we did on occasion have fun throwing disposable pipettes with traces of NaK into buckets of water. Fun, fun! Only girls use just sodium or just potassium for drying solvents.

  • Anon (unregistered) in reply to Jay
    Comment held for moderation.
  • DaveK (cs) in reply to Anon
    Anon:
    Jay:
    Anon:
    Jay:
    I was once written up during a "safety inspection" ... my felt hat...

    You wear a felt hat? What are you a pimp or something? Who wears a felt hat in this day and age.

    [image]

    And since Indiana Jones is set in the late 1930's, I stand by my comment of who wears a felt hat in this day and age? Seriously, however cool you think you might look in a fedora, 98% of everybody disagrees.

    [citation needed]
  • Groege (unregistered)

    Never, ever underestimate the ingenuity of a fool!

  • AlpineR (cs) in reply to Anon
    Anon:
    And since Indiana Jones is set in the late 1930's, I stand by my comment of who wears a felt hat in this day and age? Seriously, however cool you think you might look in a fedora, 98% of everybody disagrees.
    Shhh! The hat might not make him look cool, but it makes me look cooler by comparison. Let him keep wearing it.

    (Actually, I'm all for uncommon apparel. Would it really be cooler to wear a baseball cap like 90% of the population?)

  • JohnB (unregistered)

    Yeah, yeah, lots of fun here.

    Not really.

    While some/most of the examples here are over-the-top, people are hurt and killed every day in on-the-job incidents. The company I work for has a safety initiative that is based on the slogan "nobody gets hurt". Meetings begin with a safety point, various safety practices are refined and reinforced, fire drills are practiced quarterly, the list of safety measures is extensive.

    Maybe some of the stuff does get a bit preachy but put it in context: those of us in the offices are exposed to mostly minor risks; those in the field are exposed to risks that are real and the potential for a serious accident is ever present.

    You can't put a safety culture in place by focusing on one area of an organization ... you have to implement it in a corporate-wide initiative.

    I'm sure we are not yet the safest place to work but we are safer than we were. This is not a bad thing.

    (Dismounting from soapbox.)

  • kastein (cs) in reply to Neal
    Neal:
    I have to love this stuff. I work at a company that takes ESD !!!!VERY!!!! seriously (you must have ESD protection on to handle sheet metal). They failed to follow their own guidelines in the safety of Heel Straps by making those of us in the test dept to wear them when working with high voltage/current. They told us to remove the straps when working with said voltage.... then would chastise you for failing to wear them! Also fun..... the ESD smocks we had been wearing.... exposed metal next to exposed voltage.... one of my coworkers almost got named Sparkie.
    Understandable that you're concerned about that - but all ESD protection gear is *required* to have a fairly high resistance, usually on the order of a megohm or more. I've seen people touch live AC wiring while wearing a wrist strap without ill effects - even 480VAC will only give you about a half a milliamp peak current when there is that much resistance in the circuit, unless you get unlucky and are grounded via standing on a metal plate at the same time. The "must wear ESD protection while handling sheet metal" part is patently ridiculous though, sheesh.
    iToad:
    The US equivalent is the MSDS. If you look around, you can find an MSDS for water.
    ask and ye shall receive... It even has a CAS Number! (7732-18-5) What I find most ridiculous is that they have a company listed that the chemical is produced by, AND have it listed as "not hazardous by inhalation". Uh, ever hear of drowning? Oh, and they have firefighting measures listed.
  • amorya (cs)

    When I was in secondary school, in Design Tech class, we were allowed to use the bandsaws unsupervised. (This, I discovered later, was not a common thing for schools to allow.) We were all taught how to safely use it, and what kind of accidents could befall us doing so. There were also signs up everywhere saying "Please mind your fingers" and "Wear safety goggles"

    In my time there, I remember one accident, but quite a bad one. Someone was pushing a piece of wood through the bandsaw with his hand in line with the blade. The wood slipped, and he cut off the end of his finger. Luckily our school was right next to a hospital, and after some emergency microsurgery he was fine.

    So coming into the room later, we see there are blood splatters all up the wall and the ceiling, and over the "mind your fingers" sign. These get cleaned off quite quickly, except for the sign... which they laminated and put back on the wall. Now whenever someone asks about it they get told the story... which is a much better way to make them take precautions than a simple warning!

  • Disgruntled (unregistered)

    Where I used to work, we started having a safety inspector visit all of the work areas on a monthly basis. On her first inspection, she noted that our first aid kit had to be hung on the wall for easy access. We contacted maintenance to mount the kit just inside the doorway. The following month, the inspector arrived to do her safety check and slipped as she entered our work area. She managed to hit her head on the first aid kit and cut it open. To add insult to injury, when we opened the kit for some bandages, it was empty. Apparently when maintenance attached it to the wall, they removed the contents and forgot to put them back!

  • RobFreundlich (cs) in reply to Jay
    Jay:
    Anon:
    Jay:
    I was once written up during a "safety inspection" ... my felt hat...

    You wear a felt hat? What are you a pimp or something? Who wears a felt hat in this day and age.

    [image]

    [image]
  • nocturnal (cs) in reply to Mel
    Mel:
    Code Dependent:
    lamcro:
    Another friend crashed his car because of it.No joke.
    It's very scary sneezing while driving, because it is impossible to keep your eyes open while sneezing (fact... check it). And if you have a sneezing fit, four or five of them in rapid succession while driving in heavy traffic, you may very well miss the brake lights of the car in front of you, or the curve just ahead.
    My boyfriend completely put his back out by sneezing - being in Mongolia at the time made things a bit more complicate.

    I know someone who sneezed while driving - and drove into the back of a police car. (Possibly the same police car he asked for directions while his own car was full of pot smoke...)

    Oh, and it is possible to sneeze with your eyes open - I've done it.

    It's also possible to turn into a banana - I've done it.

  • Pine Scented (unregistered) in reply to nocturnal
    nocturnal:
    Mel:
    Code Dependent:
    lamcro:
    Another friend crashed his car because of it.No joke.
    It's very scary sneezing while driving, because it is impossible to keep your eyes open while sneezing (fact... check it). And if you have a sneezing fit, four or five of them in rapid succession while driving in heavy traffic, you may very well miss the brake lights of the car in front of you, or the curve just ahead.
    My boyfriend completely put his back out by sneezing - being in Mongolia at the time made things a bit more complicate.

    I know someone who sneezed while driving - and drove into the back of a police car. (Possibly the same police car he asked for directions while his own car was full of pot smoke...)

    Oh, and it is possible to sneeze with your eyes open - I've done it.

    It's also possible to turn into a banana - I've done it.

    It's peanut butter jelly time?

  • Mmmm good (unregistered)
    Comment held for moderation.
  • Anon (unregistered) in reply to kastein
    Comment held for moderation.
  • DaveK (cs) in reply to JohnB
    JohnB:
    Yeah, yeah, lots of fun here.

    Not really.

    While some/most of the examples here are over-the-top, people are hurt and killed every day in on-the-job incidents.

    *facepalm* Holy guano, Batman! There we all were, discussing how H'n'S officials are all po-faced humourless petty bureaucrats with an overinflated sense of their own importance, and here you are! What an impeccable sense of timing you have!
    JohnB:
    Bla bla bla safety initiative bla bla bla slogan bla bla "nobody gets hurt". Bla bla bla list of safety measures is extensive.

    Bla bla bla preachy bla bla bla: bla bla bla potential for a serious accident bla bla.

    Bla bla bla safety culture bla bla focusing bla bla bla corporate-wide initiative.

    See, I know that's not fair of me, but when I hear that kind of cliche-laden corporatespeak cant my ears just glaze over and my mind wanders back to childhood and schooldays and it all starts to sound like ...
    suffocatingly overbearing old biddy:
    Stop this! Don't do that! You could put an eye out with one of those! Oooooh, what if everybody did that?
    JohnB:
    I'm sure we are not yet the safest place to work but we are safer than we were. This is not a bad thing.

    (Dismounting from soapbox.)

    Hey! Get down off that soapbox! You could fall off and have an accident if you don't have a safety helmet, kneepads, goggles, a safety line, and a properly-secured scaffold! Where's the three hundred page safety assessment you should have completed in triplicate before you got up there?
  • DaveK (cs) in reply to RobFreundlich
    RobFreundlich:
    Nice, but you forgot the most important recommendation of all when in this situation:
    The Recommendation:
    * Just pull out your damn gun and shoot 'em, already!
  • wintermute (unregistered) in reply to werecougar
    werecougar:
    Quite amusing, especially since I now work for a company OBSESSED with safety. Obsessed well beyond the point of silliness.

    At a previous job, I got an email that went something like this:


    Subject: Please wear shoes in the breakroom

    All: Someone dropped a coffee pot in the break room, and we've swept up most of the glass we could find. But, just to be safe, please don't go barefoot into the breakroom.

    Kinda shows how casual we were with the dress code. :)

    Some of the glass we found, we just left there.

  • wintermute (unregistered) in reply to Channel6
    Comment held for moderation.
  • Anon (unregistered) in reply to DaveK

    [quote user="DaveK"] [/quote]See, I know that's not fair of me, but when I hear that kind of cliche-laden corporatespeak cant my ears just glaze over and my mind wanders back to childhood and schooldays and it all starts to sound like ... [/quote]

    I can see what you mean. Your whole post sounded like it was written by a child.

  • Matt (unregistered) in reply to wintermute
    Comment held for moderation.
  • Andy Goth (cs) in reply to iToad
    iToad:
    If you look around, you can find an MSDS for water.
    For a laugh, read the Nutrition Facts for water. :^)
  • Anonymous Doufus (unregistered)

    Office Safety guidelines are written in blood. Granted, it is a very small amount of blood, perhaps just a bruise or a scratch. Nonetheless, it is imperative that all employees adhere to these safety measures to prevent the careless application of company liability!

  • Huh? (unregistered) in reply to Sashlik

    I'd just like to know how the photographer knew to be there for the sneeze-shot.

  • DS (unregistered) in reply to DaveK
    Comment held for moderation.
  • wintermute (unregistered) in reply to Matt
    Matt:
    wintermute:
    McDonalds sold coffee that that was substantially hotter than that sold by other companies and had caused numerous other burns previously, and she tried to get McDonalds to pay for the medical bills resulting from her third degree burns.

    Does that really sound so unreasonable to you?

    Well, if you read the rest of the article, you would realize that, yes, yes it is unreasonable:

    Though defenders of the Liebeck verdict argue that her coffee was unusually hotter than other coffee sold, other major vendors of coffee, including Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts, Wendy's, and Burger King, produce coffee at a similar or higher temperature, and have been subjected to similar lawsuits over third-degree burns.[15]

    Look- COFFEE IS HOT! HOT THINGS BURN! BE CAREFUL! The problem with these frivolous lawsuits is that they assume no personal responsibility. Its one thing for a company to be irresponsible (asbestos in coffee) but another to be doing things how they should be done (hot coffee).

    Other companies also sold coffee hot enough to cause third-degree burns, and had also been sued over it? How does that make it OK for McDonalds to do the same thing? Yes, coffee is supposed to be hot but, as they admitted in court,

    Appleton conceded that McDonald's coffee would burn the mouth and throat if consumed when served
    they might be serving it a bit too hot. One can equally argue that soft drinks are meant to be served cold, but I imagine I'd have grounds for complaint if I was injured by nitrogen ice cube while drinking.

    What a horrible world we live in where fast-food chains are required to serve beverages at a temperature where you can drink them without injury...

  • DS (unregistered) in reply to wintermute
    wintermute:
    McDonalds sold coffee that that was substantially hotter than that sold by other companies and had caused numerous other burns previously, and she tried to get McDonalds to pay for the medical bills resulting from her third degree burns.

    Does that really sound so unreasonable to you?

    Yes. Coffee is hot. Don't keep it between your legs. Ergo, take responsibility for being an idiot of below par intelligence.

    If nobody takes responsibility (and bear in mind many settlements, probably including the one referred to above) are "no blame" settlements.

  • wintermute (unregistered) in reply to DS
    DS:
    Yes. Coffee is hot. Don't keep it between your legs. Ergo, take responsibility for being an idiot of below par intelligence.

    If nobody takes responsibility (and bear in mind many settlements, probably including the one referred to above) are "no blame" settlements.

    No, it wasn't. The victim was deemed to be 20% at fault, and McDonalds, 80%. It's not that hard to click on the link to find things like that out.

    And it's not unreasonable to think that coffee might be served at a temperature that isn't going to cause major damage to human flesh, is it?

  • Huh? (unregistered) in reply to lamcro
    lamcro:
    I once dislocated my shoulder while sneezing. Another friend crashed his car because of it. No joke.
    How did your dislocated shoulder cause that? And do you really consider yourself to be a friend of yourself?
  • anonymous (unregistered) in reply to RobFreundlich
    Comment held for moderation.
  • MrsPost (cs)

    Two anecdoates which are admittedly not that great after proofing.

    The industrial degreaser tank required a respirator to use. Directly across the hallway (note - the tank was in an open area) was the first aid office. In one of those flimsy fake office areas they put in factories.

    The safety guys once cited my cubicle as a fire hazard because of the teetering stacks of paper. The reason - they feared that the bottom layers had started turning into compost and the heat would cause the rest to spontaneously ignite.

    I loved those guys. It was a fake citation because they had a sense of humor.

  • Wyrd (unregistered)

    The Real WTF is, of course, that people would consider these things to be serious problems.

    I can give them a Perspective Training Course. It's called: Be a Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator. Yeah, that was my actual, real job before I landed this computer oriented position.

    I mean I really couldn't care less about paper cuts or even occasional coffee scolding. Well, it's not like I'm gonna go throw hot water on myself on purpose, but what I'm trying to say is... no amount of standard office trauma compares to climbing down a ladder into an underground pit with a sump pump and the smell of H2S and the possible danger of death from lack-of-oxygen.

    Falling out of your office chair doesn't even come close to that.

    -- Furry cows moo and decompress.

  • Watson (unregistered) in reply to ZZamboni
    Comment held for moderation.
  • hikari (cs)

    You know, I've actually done the chair one. Although all that happened was I made a noise that sounded a bit like "eeeeek!" and got called a girl.

    As opposed to the "wheeee!" sound I make when I'm spinning around on the chair, I just get called weird then.

  • anonymous (unregistered) in reply to Neal

    Proper ESD equipment is not a perfect conductor and should not cause issues when working with high voltage. IIRC ESD equipment has a 10MegOhm resistance which unless you are working with voltages >1kv will not conduct significant current to harm you.

  • DaveK (cs) in reply to Anon
    Anon:
    DaveK:
    See, I know that's not fair of me, but when I hear that kind of cliche-laden corporatespeak cant my ears just glaze over and my mind wanders back to childhood and schooldays and it all starts to sound like ...

    I can see what you mean. Your whole post sounded like it was written by a child.

    So, not only are you no fun, but you can't even balance your quote tags as well as a child can?
  • DaveK (cs) in reply to DS
    DS:
    DaveK:
    Oh, what the hell, just one more, then I'll call it a night. [image]

    Anyone who's ever done any ambulance work will look at that and tell you it wasn't caused by someone inside hitting it - looks like a drop on to me...

    Yeah, I admit it. Have *you* ever tried googling up a picture of the aftermath of someone's face hitting the inside of a windscreen at that time in the morning?

    Still, it used to be worse. I was going to use this: [image] You'd need to be an /Australian/ ambulanceman to recognise that one.

  • Mr.'; Drop Database -- (unregistered) in reply to wintermute
    wintermute:
    werecougar:
    ... Someone dropped a coffee pot in the break room, and we've swept up most of the glass we could find. But, just to be safe, please don't go barefoot into the breakroom.
    Some of the glass we found, we just left there.
    ... because it was under the fridge.
  • SenTree (cs) in reply to DaveK
    DaveK:
    Still, it used to be worse. I was going to use this: [image] You'd need to be an /Australian/ ambulanceman to recognise that one.
    Ouch ! Roo bar fail ?
  • DaveK (cs) in reply to SenTree
    SenTree:
    DaveK:
    Still, it used to be worse. I was going to use this: [image] You'd need to be an /Australian/ ambulanceman to recognise that one.
    Ouch ! Roo bar fail ?
    Roo bars are good when the roo's on the ground in front of you when you hit it. They can't save you if it's flying through the air toward you ...

    http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/fatal-impact-with-kangaroo/2006/10/17/1160850924121.html

  • icywindow (unregistered)

    So that's what's they're calling a kneecapping these days, eh? A "first aid injury"?

  • Sam (unregistered) in reply to Campbell
    Campbell:
    Reminds me of urine colour comparison charts we had above the urinals at work - sort of like universal pH comparison charts with bands of yellow varying from light "you're ok" to dark "see the nurse". The idea was that we could compare our urine colour to see if we were dehydrated or not. Admittedly we were often outside in 40+ Celsius heat but it all seemed over-the-top to most of us who weren't Darwin award candidates.

    These signs are posted above the urinals in a couple of military bases I've visited. Both of the bases were in the south east United States where it can get fairly hot. During physical training, I can easily imagine that someone would forget to drink enough water, and dehydration is a real issue.

    There were also signs with detailed instructions on washing your hands and listed penalties if you were not washing your hands according to the directions. This might seem silly, but how many times have you seen someone leave a bathroom without washing their hands at all?

  • LHC (unregistered) in reply to Sam
    Sam:
    Campbell:
    Reminds me of urine colour comparison charts we had above the urinals at work - sort of like universal pH comparison charts with bands of yellow varying from light "you're ok" to dark "see the nurse". The idea was that we could compare our urine colour to see if we were dehydrated or not. Admittedly we were often outside in 40+ Celsius heat but it all seemed over-the-top to most of us who weren't Darwin award candidates.

    These signs are posted above the urinals in a couple of military bases I've visited. Both of the bases were in the south east United States where it can get fairly hot. During physical training, I can easily imagine that someone would forget to drink enough water, and dehydration is a real issue.

    There were also signs with detailed instructions on washing your hands and listed penalties if you were not washing your hands according to the directions. This might seem silly, but how many times have you seen someone leave a bathroom without washing their hands at all?

    When you think about it...

    How many times have you touched the door leaving the bathroom after washing your hands? Just about as often as the ones who don't wash their hands! :)

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