Nanny State still alive and well

It looks like the Nanny State is alive and kicking still:

Contractors could soon be banned from working on ladders after a serious fall by a worker on the demolition of the quake-crippled Hotel Grand Chancellor in Christchurch.

Emergency talks were called by the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (Cera) and Department of Labour health and safety officials after last Friday’s incident which hospitalised a 42-year-old worker with critical head injuries.

The government has just launched a crackdown on falls from height, which accounts for almost a quarter of all fatal injuries in the construction sector.

And now, it is understood that health and safety bosses want to introduce a complete ban on working from ladders on building sites across New Zealand.

A ladder ban?

Surely they could save more lives by just banning work altogether. That way no one will ever die at work.



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  • Travnz

    After seeing photos of those upper floors from about 6 months ago, I hardly think that ladders are the biggest danger to the demo crews….

  • Anonymous

    This is what happens when you get pinheads ,who have never worked in the real world, are given jobs making the rules for those of us who do.
    No matter what safety precautions are taken shit still happens.
    Personally I have come off the top of a 6m ladder onto a concrete floor and and survived albeit had 10 months off work, a plumber I know slipped off the bottom rung of his ladder broke his neck and died.
    They are called accidents ,no amount of legislation can prevent them.

  • Joes

    A correction here WO.  Your quoted item says “working” from ladders.  Not from using ladders. ie scaffolds would have to be erected.

    Not that I agree with that, but it’s important to note it’s not an outright ban on ladders.

  • Kthxbai

    Pity Dept Labour didn’t pay as much attention to mine safety – or indeed, any. 

  • Cantab

    The grand Chancellor should have been brought down quickly in March last year.
    The 10 month Fletcher demolition job is risking lives and killing the cordoned off area.

    • Travnz

      Do you have the spare money to pay out for all those undamaged buildings that surround it. All would get flattened if the GC was imploded…

      • Guest

        Who gives a shit. It’s called commercial risk.

        Something NZ is totally afraid of.

  • Kosh103

    The nanny state growing under a National Govt. My my.

    • Agent BallSack

      It takes a long time to recover from 9 years of fuckwits and hand holders in power Kosh.

    • Kiwidon

      Well at least there has been mention of light bulbs and shower heads…………

      • Hakim of Phut

        Did you not notice they are telling Fonterra to give more milk to its competitors.

        With national , they   become Supernanny when you pay the right people. Wyatt Creech thinking of you .

    • Gazzaw

      Well I suppose the National Govt could close that department down kosh but then you would be going on about making government workers redundant. Can’t have it both ways.

  • Jimmie

    Morons. Similar to why they wonder more farmers get killed every year than say office workers.

    Duh – some work environments are more dangerous than others for particular hazards.

    Like I’m sure that a lot more office workers on Queen St Auckland burn themselves with hot lattes  every year than say fisherman from Bluff. So should we ban lattes’ in Auckland?

    Morons – no wonder NZ is becoming a country of nancy boys – Pfft

  • Hagar

    Yeah, I fell off a 1 meter high ladder at home and survived. All ladder manufacturing should be banned so that nothing can be done if you can’t reach it. Buildings shouldn’t be built so that ladders would not be needed. We should all lie down and not get get up I case we fall.

  • Bobo the Idiot

    Kosh you idiot, the Department of Labour health and safety are a bunch of your leftist idiot brigade left over from the Labour Govt Nanny state.    

    Ha Ha every time you open your mouth you put your foot in it…

  • Steve (North Shore)

    The whole Civil Service is full of these control freaks who would never stand a chance in the private sector. Total failures

  • insider

    It is standard practice by major sophisticated contruction companies overseas and in NZ to not use ladders for work platforms when working at height. There are other things you can use like scissor lifts or scaffolding. You guys seems to think it is ok for people to be killed or maimed on the job because you can;t be bothered catering to nancy boys and providing decent equipment. Hopefully you are never in a position to have to break that news to the families.

    • Andrei

      To put up scaffolding you need ladders – for some jobs it might actually require more ladder time to erect the scaffolding than to do the job from a ladder – common sense is a rare commodity in these trying times

      • insider

        But no-one is saying ban ladders. They have a role, particularly access, but not as work platforms in a well run construction site. I do hoorendous balancing acts at home on ladders. But that’s my stupid choice. When it comes to work different rules and standards apply. 

        What you are saying is time is more important than doing the job properly, and time is more important than worker safety. Well that’s just wrong. If time is most important, let’s take speed limits off truck drivers.

    • pureant

      Agreed insider…..the tough guys would have gone into pike river in the “window of oppurtunity” and added to to body count.

    • sthnjeff

      I agree wholeheartedly, Mobile scaffolding is quick and easy to erect. Ladders are fine for changing a lightbulb and for access, but for any job taking any length of tme should be done from a scaffold. While it takes some time to erect the scaffold, the job itself is always made easier when working from a stable platform.

      This is nothing new to those of us who have worked in the construction industry. It is standard practice and has been for many years now

    • James Gray

      I’m quite familiar with this practice, and the rationale behind it, I work as a telecommunications and media installer, mainly for commercial and industrial sites. A number of the businesses I work for have elected to put these measures in place themselves.

      In many cases it makes sense, and we will use a scaffold or elevated work platform, simply because it’s the right tool for the job.

      However, in some situations, it simply makes more sense to use a ladder. Try building an indoor scaffold to run a cable through a building – You have to cover your entire cable run. If, while working, you find you have to take an alternative route, you need to stop work and have your scaffold extended.Not to mention the new hazards introduced by the scaffolding, the crew carrying the planks and poles in, the potential for making egress difficult in event of fire, the potential for injury from accidentally walking in to/falling on the scaffold.Compared with simply having a crew of 2-3 with a ladder, poking a cable above a 2.4 stud ceiling, this is completely absurd.

  • Steve (North Shore)

    I see the stupid people have arrived to defend the stupid people

  • The difference is only in the name – all political parties believe they know better than the great unwashed what is good for them the problem only comes about when you put “Nanny State” against one party – you then struggle to devise a term for any other party when they do the same thing. May we call the National Party version “sensible law for stupid people”?

    • Mark R

      … or ‘a stupid law for sensible people’.

  • Orange

    It becomes a pain if you have to erect a scaffold to change a light bulb.

  • Agent BallSack

    Worker: “We have to change a light bulb” 
    OSH: “Did you turn the power off to the whole block?”
    Worker: “FUCK!”

  • Anonymous

    are ye alreet?  we dona have tee do it do weh?

  • phronesis

    Whenever I am crapping myself doing something up my 8m extension ladder that has the rigidity of a wet noodle I console myself with the thought that it would probably bankrupt me to pay a professional to do the job…