Has society ALMOST forgotten a few of the UK’s worst disasters?


Safety Law was originally conceived to try and reduce the UK’s poor accident / incident statistics and improve work related health conditions.

On Saturday 1 June 1974 at 16:53 – Flixborough was at the centre of the UK’s worst industrial accident it KILLED 28 people and seriously injured 36.

On Friday 21 October 1966, 116 children and 28 adults were KILLED in the Aaberfan disaster when a catastrophic collapse of a colliery spoil tip occurred in the Welsh village.

The Hatfield rail crash was a railway accident on 17 October 2000 where 4 people were KILLED but significant issues came to light with the company responsible for the track.

Was an oil production platform in the North Sea when an explosion and resulting fire destroyed the platform on 6 July 1988, KILLING 167 men.

The sinking of the Titanic for whatever reasons caused the deaths of 1,514 people in one of the worst maritime disasters in history.

The original drivers of Health & Safety Legislation for employers were the Legal, Moral and Social responsibilities that employers have for their employees. However – for whatever reason Health and Safety is seen as an ANAL profession / activity primarily for an ANORAK.  

Anal is used conversationally to describe a person who pays such attention to detail that the obsession becomes an annoyance to others.

 Anorak – is a person who has a very strong interest, perhaps obsessive, in niche subjects

A -           Anal/Anorak
L –           Legal
M -          Moral
O -          Or
S -           Social
T –           Thoughts

So what are your Thoughts?

1. Has the present coalition government ALMOST got it right?

This question depends on where your priorities or politics lie – “Lets make a fast buck and worry about avoidance of the litigation until the legislation has gone or been replaced!”

“Millions of pounds worth of unpaid fines are owed to the British judiciary” I know, I hear you say – “Lets get rid of the legislation that raised the fines in the first place and that will balance the books” is the easiest option always the best? 

“Let’s reshuffle the National Health Service in order to improve cost effectiveness! – Not means testing all those applying for NHS treatment “If you have contributed to the NHS for a period of time or you have been a UK National for a number of years you can receive free services –otherwise we can all pay as we go?”

2. Is every health and safety practitioner ALMOST an ANORAK?

Only those that care, I would say – Are anoraks the only people that care?

Would you send your child into danger in life without reading or being informed about the hazards that life dishes out to them?


Does your ignorance of the law rely on the law to protect YOU when it is too late! (No win no fee?) or shall we all just  jump on the greed bandwagon?.

3. Are ALL safety professionals ALMOST – Anal?

If anal means checking the fine details or caring and improving the things that you fundamentally believe in?

We could all behave like children and act without thinking the consequences through, like globular governments have done – bring the benefits of  Nuclear Power Generation into our lives and not having the technology to address the future problems of spent isotope disposal – “Let’s set aside funds for future generations to deal with the problem!”

Finally who said “The meek may inherit the earth – but they are not getting their hands on my mineral deposits”?

Is Health and Safety only important in a caring, sharing community – “If we as a society behave like the predators on the Serengeti then we might as well let our LMS responsibilities, ALMOST go too”.