Friday, 8 January 2010
Meet on the Sledge.
Thankfully whilst we are all huddled around our Plasma Screens reading the Daily Mailygraph and sick with worry, some poor souls are out there keeping the economy and the wheels of social cohesion going!
I'm thinking particularly of Peter Cornwell, RoSPA’s head of leisure safety who has gone to a great deal of trouble to produce this press release. Thank goodness there are dedicated people like him!
His Sledging Guidelines are a byword in Best Practice, extensively workshopped and without, dare I say, slip shod narrative ! Here are some of the interesting and original conclusions he comes to (I've added a few comments in brackets):
•Take time to consider your choice of sledging location – somewhere with deep snow and no obstructions such as trees, fences or rocks is the best. (A hill is quite useful apparently)
•Make sure you have plenty of room at the end of the run to slow down and stop (A brick wall is not a good landing spot)
•Walk up the slope first – it will help you spot hazards, realise how steep the slope really is, and check whether there is enough stopping distance at the bottom (I normally drive up first - I never thought of walking. Thanks Mr C!)
•Only go sledging in the daylight (unless you have BS7832 Lighting fitted to your sled - watch the POI Film "The Sledge of Darkness")
•Wrap up warm, wear gloves and remember that skateboard, cycle and ski helmets and skateboard pads double up well for sledging. (Swimming trunks anyone?)
•If you’re making your own sledge, think about the “what-ifs” if you were to crash – are there sharp edges which you could cut yourself on etc.? (Is it biodegradable? Have you fitted a double-barreleld shotgun to the front? What about those skid-marks?)
Thank goodness there are people like Mr C. literally beavering away on our behalf! In fact only yesterday, RoSPA advised people not to walk out on to the ice of deep frozen waterways, to prevent the type of drowning deaths seen during previous cold spells. Whoever would have thought of that?!
I'm off to do a thorough risk-assessment in the light of these helpful new guidelines. When I get back I'm going to search the Jobs Pages for any vacances in Overpaid Quangos for jobs sitting at a desk writing down the bleeding obvious.