THE STEPFATHER of a schoolboy who drowned as two police community support officers stood and watched today welcomed the scrapping of ‘crazy’ health and safety rules.
Ten-year-old Jordon Lyon died in May 2007 saving stepsister Bethany, who was drowning in John Pit, Standish Lower Ground.
His death caused outrage as two community support officers did not jump in to save him as they had not been fully trained how to react to the emergency and would have been in breach of health and safety rules.
Last year, Prime Minister David Cameron vowed to free the emergency services and teachers from such red tape which would prevent them from saving a life.
The Crown Prosecution Service and the Health and Safety Executive recently agreed a new ‘common sense approach’ to guidelines and now employment minister Chris Grayling has issued rules allowing emergency services to do what they can to help someone.
Under the revised code, no 999 workers will be investigated or prosecuted for breaching the laws when acting heroically,
Mr Grayling warned that people needed to trust the professional judgement of emergency services, whom he praised for putting their lives on the line.
He said: “I think there is absolutely no doubt that some people in the emergency services have been holding back from doing things in the course of duty, because of a fear of health and safety rules.”
He added the government wanted to prevent personnel from feeling constrained by health and safety rules.
While the family of Jordon welcomed the news, they were angry the laws had not been changed earlier.
Stepfather Anthony Ganderton, 42, of Beech Hill, said: “This should have been done years ago.
“It is ridiculous and just stinks.
“At the end of the day we are all human and if we see someone in danger, we all have to try - it is human instinct.”
The news follows a survey of emergency service workers which revealed almost half of police officers and three quarters of paramedics said they had been unable to intervene in a situation because of the regulations.