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Alan Dransfield's Blog

Freedom of Information and Health and Safety

This blog is aimed at shaming those who ignore health and safety and those who abuse the Freedom of Information Act out of laziness, corruption or to cover up incompetence.

Lack of safety at climbing centre

College Climbing Centre Posted on Fri, January 16, 2015 09:00:32

Email sent – 15 January 2015 21:55

Dear Mr Bradshaw

I note the Climbing Centre tower is back in full use today despite operating in a legal void for the past 18 months owing to defective safety rails, no lightning protection and gas installation defects.

Shall we wait for the body bags before you take the necessary action.

Alan M Dransfield

Gas Safety at the Exeter Uni Climbing Centre

College Climbing Centre Posted on Mon, December 22, 2014 18:01:55

Dear Mr Bradshaw

Please see the following emails to the oversight authorities ref the subject title.
As you can see from the photograph, the gas installation is a serious non-compliance to Gas Safety Standards.

The emergency shutdown valve (ESDV) is located under this steel housing which renders the safety valve inaccessible .

I understand you are awaiting a response from the Health and Safety Executive and the Devon County Council on this matter.

Shall we wait for body bags before you take public safety seriously?

With thanks

Alan M Dransfield

Merry Christmas

45 metre tower with non-compliant hand rails

College Climbing Centre Posted on Sat, May 24, 2014 07:07:30

Email sent – 22 May 2014 15:19

Dear Mr Bradshaw

I can confirm the new climbing centre is being used today. However, it
should not be in use because the inside hand rails to the 45 metre tower are
non- compliant to H&S standards.

May I suggest you ask the college about this please

With thanks

Alan M Dransfield

Weil’s Disease

College Climbing Centre Posted on Tue, March 18, 2014 11:41:35

Sent: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 6:57 AM


Dear Mr Bradshaw

I have now submitted a formal complaint to the HSE via the HSE online report forms ref the DCC failure to ensure Weils Disease Risk Assessment is carried out before children and students undertake outdoor /water activities at the Haven Banks Centre.

As you are aware Mr Bradshaw, the vicinity in which these water activities take place include the basin, which is stagnant water and synonymous to Leptospirois (Weils Desease).

I see young children and students on a daily basis wearing no shoes whilst under the Instruction of the DCC teachers.

As a former Environmental Minister, I am sure you are aware that Weil’s Desease shows similar symptoms to common ‘flu, hence all participants taking part in these water activities should be advised of such symptoms and dangers and the required mitigation methods, i.e.

1. Do not fully submerge you head/body underwater.

2. Shower after use.

3. Protect cuts and grazes with plaster.

4. Wear shoes/trainers/gloves at all times.

Please see the following extract from the Devon and Cornwall Police Health and Safety Policy:

15.2 Leptospirosis (Weil’s Disease)

15.2.1 Leptospirosis is an uncommon disease caused by a bacterium usually

transmitted via the urine of infected rodents, foxes, cattle and pigs. Most force

staff are not considered to be at risk of this disease at work unless they enter

sewers, drainage, derelict buildings, but the Underwater Search Unit and

some specialist search team staff who take part in wading and sewer

searches might be at greater risk. All police divers have been issued with

warning cards for their general practitioners. Specialist advice should be

sought from the OHSU.

Obviously the local constabulary take Weil’s Disease VERY SERIOUSLY and I believe the DCC are completly and wilfully ignorant of such matters.

Quite frankly Mr Bradshaw, it beggars belief the DCC are conducting such activity in stagnant waters without warning or advising mitigation methods via a professional risk assessment. In the construction industry, Principal Contractors are required to ensure Wiel’s Desease forms part of the Risk assessment and employees are required to sign for the risk assessment.

I have no doubt that the DCC have no risk assessment for lightning dangers either during these water activities and the last place you want to be during a thunderstorm is in the water or a canoe.

Your consistent failures on these matters must be interpretative as you condoning such actions.

I consider that OFSTED are failing their duty of care by their failure to identify this matter.

I fully appreciate that water activity on the Main River Exe do not offer significant risk to Weils Disease because the water is free flowing but no so in the Basin. Nothwithstanding this fact, I fervently believe that Ofsted and the DCC are failing their duty of care by the risk assessment failures.

With thanks

Yours sincerely

Alan M Dransfield

Gas, LPS and Weil’s disease dangers

College Climbing Centre Posted on Tue, March 18, 2014 11:37:57

Dear Mr Bradshaw

As you are aware, I have reported the subject title to the Principle Contractor and to the HSE via their electronic reporting forms dated 12 /7/13. To date nobody has contacted me or acknowledged my complaint.

You are also aware that this new Climbing Centre has now been commissioned and being used by the general public. You are also aware that this new climbing centre has not been provisioned with Lightning Protection Systems in accordance with BS-EN62305/2008; hence there are two major H&S i.e. gas and LPS.

In actual fact, there are three (3) major H&S issues on these premises, the 3rd one being the failure to provide Weils disease risk assessment for the general public and DCC Instructors.

I would be grateful if you would write to the HSE and ask them why they haven’t responded to my online report ref F250G2 dated 12 July 2013.

Would you also ask the HSE why they haven’t responded to my online complaint form F2508 (12/7/13) ref Cowick Street Building Site without debris netting.

With thanks

Yours sincerely

Alan M Dransfield

Slippery steps

College Climbing Centre Posted on Tue, March 18, 2014 11:32:46

Sent: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 2:17 PM


Dear Mr Bradshaw

Please see the photo of the subject title and as the photo clearly shows the finish level is running towards the 3 steps, which means all the rain run-off water will cascade down the steps and into the basin, which is all well and good from an environmental point of view but it means that the steps will be wet during wet periods and cause a possible H&S slip issue.

This area is approx 200 mt 2; hence a substantial amount of run-off water is expected to run off this paved area.

Any designer with half a brain would have included an Aco Drain at the top of the steps. Having said that, we are talking about the DCC and Midas Construction; hence, no Aco Drain and a host of other irregularities and anomalies. In the far left hand corner you might just see the infamous connection which is NOT accessible in the event of an emergency.

Would you like to meet me at this climbing centre sometime Mr Bradshaw and I can show you my concerns and complaint first hand?

With thanks

Yours sincerely


Can’t shut down the gas in an emergency

College Climbing Centre Posted on Mon, March 17, 2014 08:36:05

Email sent 16 March 2014 20.37

Dear Mr Bradshaw

Shall we wait until we need body bags before we take Gas safety seriously in Exeter?

You can start with the Exeter College climbing centre on the Quay, which has NO ACCESS to the Emergency Shut Down Valves.

For your information,action and files.

Yours sincerely

Alan M Dransfield

Will Mr Bernard Hughes OBE act?

College Climbing Centre Posted on Sun, February 02, 2014 09:35:02

Attn Chairman of Devon County Council

Mr Bernard Hughes OBE

Dear Mr Hughes

Your Mrs C Cooke responded to me yesterday stating that such matters of gas safety comes under the Health and Safety Executive. Quite frankly, I am very concerned for a
number of H&S issues at this Climbing Centre, which was designed and built
with central Government funds under the DCC remit.

The photograph is the gas mains installation emergency shut-down valve and
any person with half a brain can see this installation if not only sub-standard,
it is life threatening, because that gas emergency shut down Valve is NOT
as required by law.

Other serious H&S issues at this centre include sub standard Lightning
Protection Installations and substandard hand rails on the climbing tower.

Your Mrs Cooke and Mrs Bullock are at best criminally negligent ……….. for knowingly and wilfully accepting substandard and dangerous buildings.

Would you like to meet me at this building to discuss other H&S issues
or shall we wait until the body bags are required?

Yours sincerely

Alan M Dransfield


Email sent – 31 January 2014 14:19

Dear Mr Hughes

Further to my earlier response. I received a reply today from DCC Duty
Health and Safety Advisor Mrs C Cooke ref the New Climbing Centre which is
basically a “Body Swerve” of her remit. She claims such matters come under
the HSE. I don’t accept that because the DCC designed and built this
Climbing Centre and it is STILL operating in a legal void, designed and built
with Central Government funds; hence, the DCC have a duty of care to ensure full compliance.

It is all very well and good for you to pass on my emails over Mr Hughes,
but you have a duty of care to ensure your subordinates are taking such
matters seriously, which obviously, they are not

There is demonstrable evidence your Mr C Cooke is failing her duty of care.

May I please make a suggestion, which would result in me not including you
in my email list. I suggest you inform the DCC Legal Officer Jan Shadbolt to
remove the lifetime email ban and allow me to email ONE (1) person only within
the DCC. May I suggest that person is Margaret Bullock the DCC H&S guru.

For your information, action and files

With thanks

yours sincerely

Alan M Dransfield

On Fri, Jan 31, 2014 at 11:03 AM, Councillor Bernard Hughes <> wrote

Dear Mr Dransfield,

Thank you for your emails, I have passed them on to the
relevant officers to be dealt with. I am sorry that I am not in a position to
address your emails in detail so I am requesting that you do not email me on
these matters in future as I can not respond to them.

Yours sincerely

Cllr Bernard C J Hughes


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