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We’ve heard it all before… health and safety gone mad! Council bureaucrats stifle fun for little Johnny. And all that. It’s a tedious debate for all concerned. Usually the argument against health and safety is that common sense should prevail. And of course it should. Really. But that means common sense both on the part of the provider, and, crucially, the user. Lest we forget, here are some good reasons why rangers and their ilk can sometimes be a bit cautious about the risks that people will willingly take in public places.
El Caminito del Rey is a walkway dating from 1901, now fallen into disrepair, pinned along the steep walls of a narrow gorge in El Chorro, near Álora in Málaga, Spain. Several people have lost their lives on the walkway in recent years; after four people died in two accidents in 1999 and 2000, the local government closed the entrances. However, adventurous tourists still find their way onto the walkway to explore it. (High quality video here: thanks to Ellie Jenkins for link)
Why do councils spend all that time and money on red tape? All those inspections of play equipment, tedious reporting and ticksheets? Can’t we just let children be children? Well, maybe. Or maybe not. The problem is, as this video shows, that once you provide equipment, you’ve got to maintain it and prove that you did. Or these guys will have you.