Thursday, August 28, 2008

Warning signs for morons

I spent a chunk of my workday in a Genie lift hanging signs. I spent a moment debating whether or not I should place warning signs around my work area, and I decided against it. I figured that if I were to use warning signs, an acceptable sign would say, "CAUTION -- Man Working Overhead". An even better sign would be some sort of universal graphic depicting a guy overhead in a lift; it's multilingual and easily understood, even by the illiterate. But, I reasoned, I couldn't reasonably place signage larger than the actual lift and occupant -- and therefore warning signs are unnecessary. Because if a pictogram of a guy in a lift is adequate, how much better is the actual guy in an actual lift? Anyone who would see me in a Genie lift overhead, but who would still need some sort of signage to inform them of potential danger, is probably too stupid to be walking around unassisted. It would be like warning signs for a fire: anyone who needed a warning sign in front of the fire that said, "CAUTION -- FIRE -- HOT" is probably beyond help anyway. So, if I were to place warning signs, I think I'd print them to say, "Caution -- Man Working Overhead, You Moron!", because only morons would need the sign.

This being said, I was amazed by how many people actually need the sign. It wasn't uncommon to see people walking so close to the raised lift that they had to step around the outriggers. And, one guy actually sat down in a chair and scooted back so he was under the lift basket. I really don't think signage will help these people, but just in case, I'm making the signs next time....

1 comment:

Clint said...

Maybe fake latex spills that you can layout in your work area to make them nervous that you might drop things on them.

Ideally, half of some heavy object and fake cracks in the floor to make it appear that you dropped something big enough to embed itself in the floor.