Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Mucking About

Those of you that are old enough may remember the Abbeyste@d Disaster in Lancashire back in 1984.

A fuller summary of the incident is here, but in short 16 people died and a further 28 injured when a visit to an underground pumping station ended in disaster when trapped gases exploded blowing the structure apart.

Nine years later I started work with the water company in question and the importance of safe management of entry into confined spaces was drummed into us.

I guess the level of danger of entry into such spaces is largely unknown to the public at large and to the younger post-Abbeyste@d generation in particular.

Which would possibly explain why when of one of our colleagues in one of our Scottish offices, found this whilst undertaking a search for a particular make of m@nhole cover.

Needless to say that the jaws in our office were uniformly dropped as we clicked on the 'Dr@ins' link and explored their accounts of their expeditions into major dr@inage systems in M@nchester and W@rrington.

Even leaving to one side the dangers of explosive gases, flash flooding, trade efflu_ent discharges, playing around with automated mechanical gear that could switch on without notice, contracting Lypto_sporidium, interfering with hydr@ulic controls and risking causing a pollu_tion incident… oh and popping up through a m@nhole in the M62, who would want to spend their leisure time wading through sew@ge…in shorts?

Needless to say the details have been passed to the asset owner…

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