This had its origin in a Great Western Railway initiative before the Great War, “The Safety Movement” which was taken up by most of the other railway companies. Every year, a large number of railway workers were killed or injured. The situation was so bad that larger railways like the GWR and the London & North Western had workshops devoted to the manufacture of artificial limbs and other aids.
Apart from genuine “accidents” the majority of these deaths and injuries could have been avoided if rules and regulations were obeyed, or common sense had been used. As it says on the first page of the booklet “FAMILIARITY BREEDS CONTEMPT” The Safety Movement was a co-ordinated attempt to educate staff through the medium of booklets, posters on staff notice boards and talks to any group meetings of stafF like Ambulance Classes and Mutual Improvement Classes. The Movement enjoyed considerable success, with deaths and injuries falling year upon year, until the difficulties of WWII, with men working long hour, and the blackout, cased the figures to rise.
In the light of the present day “Health and Safety at Work “ culture, this booklet is an interesting novelty.
Great Northern Railway Company. Rules and Regulations to be observed by ALL PERSONS in the service of THE GREAT NORTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY. 1889/90 [ebook]
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