The summer is over and Halloween is just around the corner.

We may a bit old for Trick or Treating but we’re all looking forward to dressing up, decorating the office and bringing in lots of sweets…

There are many stories in circulation about the true origins of Trick or Treating.  

Some believe that it is a modern tradition that has spread from America across to the UK and the rest of Europe, others suggest it can be traced to the British custom of Guising (going door-to-door in disguise) from the 16th Century.

In a similar way, there can sometimes be confusion about what is factual or myth when it comes to safety, so below we have outlined some common examples with the aim of putting straight some Health and Safety Tricks!


Trick or Truth ...

Trick:             “I only have white Asbestos in my building, which is not dangerous.”

Truth:            “Though the least dangerous of the 3 types, Chrysotile (White Asbestos) is still very dangerous and can cause deadly illnesses such as: Asbestosis, Mesothelioma, and Lung Cancer. It was also the most commonly used and latest to be banned.”



Trick:                  A competent person is someone who simply has the competence to carry out a particular task safely.

Truth:            “In general terms, the definition of a competent person is someone who has the necessary skills, experience and knowledge to manage health and safety.”


Trick:             “Only men can contract Legionnaire’s Disease.”

Truth:            “Though men are 3 times more likely than women be susceptible to Legionnaire’s disease, women can still contract it and there are many cases of women being badly affected.”




Scary Statistics


  • In 2017/2018, 1.4m people suffered from work-related ill-health.

  • In 2017, there were 2,523 Mesothelioma deaths due to past Asbestos exposures.

  • In 2018/19, 147 workers have been killed at work.

  • In 2018/19, 40 fatal injuries to workers were due to falls from a height. This compares to 35 in 2017/18.

  • In 2017/18 stress, depression or anxiety accounted for 44% of all work-related ill health cases and 57% of all working days lost due to ill health.

(HSE)