Living Dangerously

“It’s against regulations.” The phrase is everywhere these days.

When four boxes of books arrived from my printer, the delivery driver backed his vehicle up to the garage but would not carry the books inside. “It’s against regulations,” he said.

I bent to lift a box while he stood flatfooted at the entrance to the garage and watched. It turns out regulations now forbid delivery operators, haulers and other shippers from carrying anything across the threshold.

Where you stand on this depends on your liking for government regulation. For my part, I’d much rather see the problem of on-the-job injury tackled company by company or even industry by industry. That way, we might see one sector or business leapfrog another with different techniques or solutions. Instead, we have a blanket rule imposed on all businesses. As far as I can see, this permits no latitude to the business and allows no room for individual judgement by the driver.

Exercising your judgement is part of what enables you to grow as an individual. Does it overstate the problem to suggest that excessive regulation stunts personal growth? I don’t think so. But these days flouting the regulations means you’re living dangerously, in more ways than one.



2 replies
  1. Connie Flanagan
    Connie Flanagan says:

    I admire the individuals who do use their own judgement, whatever the regulations may be, and are willing to take responsibility for their own choices. To use an example similar to yours, I have a neighbour who is recovering from chemotherapy, radiation, and radical surgery due to esophageal cancer. Although he is able to eat some soft foods now, he still get most of his calories and nutrients via a J-tube. As a consequence, regular deliveries of the tube feeding solution are made. His abdomen having been opened for the surgery, he is yet unable to lift anything more than about five pounds. The man who makes these deliveries actually carries the heavy cases downstairs to my neighbour’s basement suite, regardless of policy. I understand that companies are attempting to avoid expenses due to job-related injuries, but at what cost to the consumer?
    At the bookstore where I work, we are taught proper lifting techniques and use our own judgement. If a box is too heavy for one of us, we ask a colleague to help. Education about how to avoid injury should take precedence over blanket regulations such as the one you described.

    • hy
      hy says:

      There’s so much common sense in what you say, Connie. It’s a pity that people too often have to break the law, or regulation, in order to exercise it.


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