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Take a break from safety scares

PUBLISHED: 09:17 30 July 2008 | UPDATED: 11:28 03 July 2010

Innovative new guidelines should ensure that health and safety scaremongers do not ruin traditional summer holiday activities in Yarmouth.

The risk index, produced by Yarmouth Borough Council and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), is the first of its kind in East Anglia and gives advice on sensible risk management for the summer holidays.

Innovative new guidelines should ensure that health and safety scaremongers do not ruin traditional summer holiday activities in Yarmouth.

The risk index, produced by Yarmouth Borough Council and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), is the first of its kind in East Anglia and gives advice on sensible risk management for the summer holidays.

It is hoped the 10 guidelines will see an end to health and safety scares stopping children having fun on beaches and in parks and wildlife centres.

The index says that sensible health and safety precautions should not be about creating a totally risk-free environment and generating mounds of bureaucratic forms to fill in.

Instead the guideline states that risks should be balanced with the benefits of activities and learning should not be stifled by health and safety jobsworths.

Paul Carter, Health and Safety Executive principal inspector, said: “We have all heard the stories about banning hanging baskets or making children wear goggles when they play conkers.

“That is not what the HSE is about. We want to focus on practical steps that protect people from real risks that can lead to injury and death.

“We do not want to stop people from living their lives.”

The HSE now wants other councils in the region to follow Yarmouth Borough Council's joint safety risk scheme.

Richard Packham, council chief executive, said: “Exaggerated heath and safety stories risk undermining the good work we do in protecting vulnerable members of society.”

The index was launched at Thrigby Hall Wildlife Gardens, in Filby, which encourages children to get up close to nature.

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