It’s never happened before!

It’s never happened before!

I’ve encountered a worrying amount of supposedly intelligent managers who choose to ignore certain hazards based on that logic!

The fact that it’s never happened before is no guarantee that it’s never going to happen, is it?

You may never previously have had a fire on the premises, but I would certainly hope that there are fire prevention and protection measures in place nonetheless.

Because even though a fire might never have happened before, it is reasonable to expect that virtually anyone should be able to foresee that a fire could occur under certain circumstances.

Fire is a reasonably foreseeable hazard and organisations are required to control the risk.

Fire is an obvious example. There are undoubtedly many less-obvious hazards within any normal workplace that may never have actually caused harm to anyone before, but might still be regarded by the courts as being reasonably foreseeable.

Best way to deal with those: an appropriate health and safety management system that includes suitable and sufficient risk assessments.

Oh, and people in leadership positions who don’t hand-wave dismissively whilst uttering:- “it’ll be fine – it’s never happened before!”