How to be a Safety Extremist

imageWe recently witnessed extremism in safety when the AIHS Visions conference espoused an extremist understanding of persons: ‘humans as hazards’.

We also saw recently Safety espousing not a change in safety fundamentalism, but simply making fundamentalism more ‘fun’.

The more Safety pursues the absolute of zero the more its trajectory must become extremist. Such is the dysfunction of perfectionism.

So, in order to help the safety extremists get to their goal quickly, I offer the following methodical advice. Just follow the following Commandments:

  1. Make sure you are obsessed with safety ( Proposing that obsession is as a good thing, only makes sense to a safety extremist. Similarly, when I hear safety people talk about how safety is their ‘life’. Such language and obsession indicate a warped view of living and being. The last thing that should drive human living and being is safety.
  2. Make humans a hazard. If this is what one espouses in safety then humans must be eliminated, the pinnacle of the Hierarchy of Controls ( ).Ierarchy of Controls.
  3. Feed insularity and mono-disciplinarity. Keep to knowledge within the mono-discipline of safety. Feed yourself on engineering and behaviourism (
  4. Think cultically ( This is helped by running safety workshops as a Hillsong festival. At such conferences it also helps to have banners about of ‘safety saves’ and ‘just believe’ (
  5. Worship Zero. There are plenty of resources for you to use here, especially the Spirit of Zero video ( Use this apocalyptic video often and ensure that the sound is turned up.
  6. Use religious language to describe safety. Talking about faith and belief in zero, ‘just believe’, ‘safety saves’ and ‘heroes’. These will all help to maintain the metaphysics of zero and safety so that people will think that safety is about having ones head in the clouds.
  7. Demonise fallibility ( Despite all the evidence to the contrary, make sure you espouse perfect goals, perfect humans and perfect organisations as your identity. Also, when anyone is injured ensure they are blamed for their ‘choice’ and preach ‘all accidents are preventable’ to them.
  8. Develop rituals and mantras ( that convince people that mantras and rituals in themselves ‘saves lives’. This includes ensuring that the completion of paperwork is equated to safety effectiveness (

I was tempted to run the list to ten, thus mirroring the 10 commandments but thought it more interesting if readers responded with their own suggestions on extremism based on what they have experienced in the safety industry? Just add your thoughts in the comments to be in the draw for a book prize.

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