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Myth Busters and “Health & Safety”: The UK government

The British government has a panel that, at least on paper, aims to bust some myths. Their web site says:

“Health and Safety” is often incorrectly used as a convenient excuse to stop what are essentially sensible activities going ahead. The Health and Safety Executive has set up an independent panel – the Myth Busters Challenge Panel – to scrutinize such decisions….

This Panel will look into complaints regarding the advice given by non-regulators such as insurance companies, health and safety consultants and employers and, quickly assess if a sensible and proportionate decision has been made. We want to make clear that “health and safety” is about managing real risks properly, not being risk averse and stopping people getting on with their lives.

If you think a decision or advice that you have been given in the name of health and safety is wrong, or disproportionate to what you are doing, you can complain to the panel. It will investigate and publish its findings on the HSE website

The panel advertises itself (in the cartoon reproduced here, and presumably elsewhere) with the phrase “The panel with the voice of common sense”. It offers a list of “Top 10 worst health and safety myths — Daft decisions blamed on health & safety”.

(Thanks to investigator Adrian Smith for bringing this to our attention.)

BONUS: The unrelated, except possibly in spirit and as inspiration, Mythbusters TV series

Improbable Research