Sunday, 20 December 2009

Conservatives to reduce health and safety requirements and compensation claims

Very interesting speech by David Cameron as to how he will deal with health and safety regulations and also the personal injury world. Here's some extracts:

I believe consideration of all this evidence can only lead us to one conclusion: for the good of our society, we need to sort out the nonsense of this over-the-top culture of health and safety and compensation...

School activities
But I believe we should consider whether further protection should be provided in cases involving adventure training and other outdoor activity by schools....I also want the law to be quite clear that there is no obligation on activity organisers or public authorities to warn of an obvious risk. It is time that we rid our country of those ludicrous warning notices stating the completely obvious...

Good Samaritans
We have said we will amend the police and Crown Prosecution Service Codes of Practice so that if a person acts in good faith to prevent a crime or detain a criminal, this would be a factor weighing against any decision to prosecute them. I want to see if we can extend this sort of legal protection for all people acting in good faith – especially public service professionals...

Small, local and voluntary groups
Second, can we help alleviate some of health and safety oversight that currently burdens small, local and voluntary organisations? To my mind, there is good reason for this. If, for instance, four or five people come together to clean their local park, they do not as a group fall under health and safety law at all. But they may do if the work benefits the local council running the park, as it then becomes their employer...I have asked David Young to investigate what could be done to exempt them from regulatory burdens...

Civil Liability Act
Third, do we need a Civil Liability Act? By that, I mean do we need to define civil liability for negligence in statute? At the moment there is no one single Act of Parliament that ties all this work together, showing where the liability for negligence lies. So I have asked [Lord] Young whether such an Act would be necessary and effective in reducing our excessive health and safety culture...

And what I have described today is the beginnings of putting it right. For every piece of health and safety legislation, we need to ask whether it fulfils a useful purpose – and if not, it must go. And we must bring some common sense to the laws surrounding compensation. I want people to know that with the Conservatives, government will let you get on with your life without unnecessary rules and regulations. I want everyone to know that with the Conservatives, if you do good, get involved and make a contribution, the system will back you. And I want people to know that with the Conservatives, the legal system will be there protecting those who need it most.

Friday, 27 November 2009

Non-fire night!

The Daily Mail reported the other day that bonfire night in Ilfracombe was going to involve people crowding "around a screen showing film footage of fire after organisers gave up wrestling with health and safety rules to hold the real thing." It went on: "The event - dubbed 'non-fire night' - will leave families holding sparklers and staring up at a 16ft by 12ft screen showing images of a roaring blaze. Organisers at Ilfracombe Rugby Club say they were put off having the real thing by the 'mountain' of paperwork and regulations set by council bosses.
Officials at the authority said that to have a bonfire they would require five qualified fire marshals and metal barricades to keep onlookers at a safe distance."

Poole axes real Christmas tree 'for safer fake one because of health and safety'

The Telegraph reports that the Dorset town of Poole has spent £14,000 on a health and safety-approved fake Christmas tree because real ones are a danger to the public.

Friday, 20 November 2009

BBC covers first personal injury case

Nice to see the BBC doing a piece on the case which started the whole personal injury world off.