Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Oh the complications

The European Parliament is having a fire drill. Nothing contentious in that. But nothing is as simple as it seems. Somebody has sent me the details.
What happens?
· An alarm will begin ringing, area by area, triggering immediately the intervention of security personnel who will move to the affected zone:
· The evacuation will proceed by zone;
· NB: The evacuation exits will open; the fire doors will close automatically;
· The smoke extraction system will switch on automatically.

What to do?

At the sound of the alarm:
· take only your personal belongings;
· when leaving your office, close the windows and doors without locking them;
· do not use the elevators or service lifts;
· follow the green arrow markings leading to the staircase and the evacuation route until you have left the building;
· do not under any circumstances turn back;
· once outside the buildings, assemble in the places indicated by the security staff.

N.B: Persons with reduced mobility will be taken care of on a floor by floor basis by the security staff.
Well that is all pretty clear. So what could be the problem?
Dear Mr President,

I would like to thank you for informing us about the evacuation exercise that will take place in the coming days.

As the first deaf member of the European Parliament I would like to draw your attention to the fact that due to my hearing impairment I am afraid, I won't hear the alarm ringing. Therefore I would be more than happy to consult the body responsible for the accessibility of the Parliament's alarm system, in order to find a common solution and all disabled people working in the European Parliament can feel comfortable in the case of a real danger.

Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

Yours sincerely,

Ádám KÓSA MEP
Suggestions as to how to deal with this have ranged from the caustic,
A perfect emblem of what is wrong with society: systems are no substitute for people in making others comfortable.
Indignant, Cheltenham
To the caring
Surely a red flag-waving fireman could be assigned to him at all times he's in the building, ready to wave the flag in his face in the event the alarm goes off.

3 comments:

The Boiling Frog said...

Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

Unfortunately phrased?

Edward Spalton said...

Reminds me of when we put a new fire alarm system into our old, Victorian mill building. The Fire Officer thought he would test reactions and rang the bell.

All that happened was that three floors up a small window opened and a black face appeared, demanding

"What you want, mahn?"

There wasn't the fuss in those days that there would be now.

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