Thursday, April 12, 2012

Helmet Rule – Safety or discomfort ?

One of my friends happened to visit a IT company campus recently and had a taste of the efficiency of the helmet rule there :)

He had stopped in the shop just a few feet away from the entrance gate for a quick smoke and then when he tried to enter in TCO, he was stopped by the security. He did have his ID, but then why did they stop him?? For the reason that he was not wearing his helmet! My friend is an affable, law abiding dude who has been using helmets even before the government passed the rule. So he was not one of the “regular” guys who hates to wear helmet and carry it like their baby on their bike tanks. He judged that he only had a few feet to go into the campus and didnt want to do with the hassles of putting on his helmet for a distance of 20 feet. For “clever” people who might argue that the TCO parking lot is more than 100 metres from the main gate, I would like to remind them that we are not having a highway within the campus and company parking lots are not supposed to be accident-prone areas.

The security will not allow him to enter without his helmet on; the reason – they have been asked to ensure that motor-cyclists wear helmets. This is the “best” form of following rules in word, I would say. There is no reason why a person has to wear helmets while riding inside a company campus, except when

1. people working there drive insane and
2. the speed limit is strictly more than 50.
Everyone would agree that none of the above is true :)

Another question that comes to my mind is , how far can we put rules to ensure that an associate is safe? If an associate is not willing to wear helmets, nobody can force him/her to do so. What if they remove it as soon as they step out??? So there are some suggestions that might help all employees to be safe drivers :)

1) There be driving lessons for all employees. Even if you have a license( Offshore/onsite :) ) it doesnt matter. You will have to enroll yourself in these sessions. All employees must pass an exam which will help you to drive a car/ motorcycle within the campus.

2) There will be disciplinary action against an associate if he/she meets with an accident outside the campus. Inside the campus, they will be treated with Tincture and Dettol, so that they drive safely the next time:)

3) Setup random security personnel to follow associates to ensure that they wear their helmets until they reach home. If not a report will be submitted to their managers.

4) Associates wearing helmets for longer durations will be recognized and promoted with “safe-techie of the month” award. It will be worth 50 WAH points ;)

Jokes apart, helmets are life-savers and we need them for our safety. Lack of safety measures leads to death in almost 60% of the accidents and for the bereaved family/friends, death does leave a void which will be abyss. I think the authorities should think through the reason for bringing in the helmet rule in first place is for the peoples safety and not to harass them!

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