Saturday, January 28, 2006

This is Modern Britain

A small hamlet is to have its mail-to-the-door delivery ended after a visit by a Royal Mail health and safety inspector. The mail has been delivered there for as long as living memory- but not any more.

The inspector's report "identifies three potential ways a postman would be killed if he tried to bring a sack of letters up the slope. The grassy pastures hide 23 hazards capable of inflicting major injury, six that could cause serious injury and two risking minor injury."

There are no details in the report of the number of postmen killed, maimed or otherwise injured delivering to what must surely be one of the most hazardous areas in the United Kingdom. Funnily enough though, the hamlet lies on the Brecon Beacons National Park path and as such entices thousands of ramblers to stroll along its route every year. Again, the health and safety report makes no mention of what percentage of these adrenalin-addicted, thrill-seeking hikers are horribly wounded negotiating the route.

The Royal Mail defended its decision by saying "What looks like a quite pleasant country walk could be a lethal stroll for a postman on a dark winter morning."



Ol' BC said...

Could he not invert the route and arrive there in the daylight? It may sound silly, but we do things like that in the U.S.

Jay.Mac said...

Ah, but that would require a modicum of commonsense and perhaps would involve *gasp* the postmen being exposed to some deadly risk that you and I commonly overlook- a treacherous rain-splashed footpath for example could cause a nasty fall leading to horrendous muscle strains, broken bones or even death. Or a sudden gust of wind coming down from the mountain might turn one of his letters into a lethal flying projectile capable of poking him in the eye or even (admittedly worst case scenario but you know how paper cuts can be) decapitation.

It's a wonder that there isn't a national debate going about up-armouring post vans and issuing them with body armour. Although I'm sure the health and safety inspectors would have something to say about the risk of postmen lifting and carrying such heavy items...