Pugh sticks up for posties sacked for not wearing cycle helmets

The Express has the story:

ROYAL Mail bosses were branded draconian yesterday after sacking three postmen in a week – for not wearing cycle helmets. They were accused of adhering rigidly to ­guidelines to cut staff and slash costs ahead of ­privatisation. Many others also face disciplinary action ­following the clampdown in Southport, Merseyside. Several have launched an appeal to be re-instated. Father-of-two David Smith was dismissed after 17 years.

Southport Lib Dem MP John Pugh believes the posties have been treated unfairly:

The only one at risk for not wearing a helmet is the postman himself – so why is the Royal Mail threatening disciplinary action?”

A Royal Mail spokesman blandly averred: “We take the safety of employees ­very seriously.”

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  • Andrew Suffield 27th Jun '09 - 10:49am

    They’re going to claim it’s setting a bad example for the public, which is bad for their corporate image. Not going to win this one. Better be careful it doesn’t backfire.

  • Martin Kinsella 27th Jun '09 - 11:37am

    thanks for your input Chris.

    Excuse me for not giving a damn.

  • The evidence is that if you wear a helmet, you are more likely to get knocked off because other vehicles give you less space (see work by researchers at the University of Bath – who found you were safest wearing a blond wig). Good luck to these posties!

  • Richard Burton 28th Jun '09 - 7:11am

    Nowhere with a helmet law or massive increase in wearing due to an advertising campaign has been able to show any reduction in risk. Yes, cycling deaths fall, but the number of cyclists falls by more, so the risk actually increases. Including New Zealand Chris, but don’t be ashamed about being gullible, lots of people believe that helmets are effective, but not the ones who’ve looked at the evidence.

    The Royal Mail introduced the helmet rule, with the support of the union, not as a safety measure, but as a uniform rule for cycling postmen. Before they did so, they commissioned a report about helmets from the Transport Research Laboratory, which they refused to publish. They still haven’t published it. Has any other postmen been dismissed for a uniform rule infringement?

    Check out http://www.cyclehelmets.org

  • stuart austin 29th Jun '09 - 10:46am

    I should point out that Managers at Royal Mail can be tken to court and be given a heavy fine for not ensuring that staff wear the appropriate protection.

  • Filippo Negroni 15th Apr '10 - 11:40pm

    What really astounds me is that helmets are made compulsory, and some poor misguided fool even apparently battled to force Royal Mail to issue them to cycling postmen, yet I see no mention of sending them on to a Bikeability Level 3 course or making Cyclecraft compulsory reading nor supply said book free of charge.
    Yet Cyclecraft and Bikeability are both existing government sponsored initiatives valid for all who cycle.
    What a waste of effort and money.

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