The Less You See, the More Likely to Die

Originally posted on March 7, 2021 @ 5:07 PM

The Less You See, the More Likely to Die

imageRecent research shows that vision impairment is related to death rate ( So if you say you spruik zero, then better get out your glasses.

I wrote all about the nature of vision in my latest book: Envisioning Risk, Seeing, Vision and Meaning in Risk ( In this book I document/case study all the various ways we understand how people see the world and what physical, psychological and cultural vision is. There should be no greater concern in the safety world than the physical, psychological and cultural nature of perception.

In this latest study from The Lancet Global Health (A meta-analysis, consisting of 48,000 people from 17 studies,) we discover that ‘severe vision impairment had a higher risk of all-cause mortality’. I wonder what the PPE heroes and zero acolytes are doing about vision? The study states this:

‘According to the data, the risk of mortality was 29% higher for participants with mild vision impairment, compared to normal vision. The risk increases to 89% among those with severe vision impairment’.

The trouble is, whilst zero vision propaganda is peddling the use of fork lifts without any safety precautions (, the real vision flies under the radar. Well done Zero!

While all these silly marketing campaigns like: Pickles, Meerkats, Dumb Ways to Dies, Sexy Sophie, and Hazardman etc, the real concerns for safety that can’t be seen, are not counted. Safety only counts what can be counted, it doesn’t count what counts. The best way to achieve zero of course, is through ignorance.

If brutalism was measured as a mental health statistic ( ) we would find out that zero vision is the greatest cause of harm across the safety world! When you can’t see past objects and PPE to the real causes of harm, you have zero vision.

Interestingly, the research demonstrates that most vision impairment can be prevented or corrected. Much of these concerns are related to poverty, disadvantage and vulnerability. Hmmm, I wonder if the AIHS BoK on ethics views these moral problems as a cause for harm? The research certainly confirms these economic and political problems as the greatest cause of harm.

Of course not, just do your duty, count the injury stats and don’t think beyond barricades, bollards, behaviorism ( ) and bashings.

What this study demonstrates like any professional would acknowledge, is that harm and risk is a wicked problem (; ).

You can’t just spruik vision zero as if human fallibility, vulnerability and frailty is not connected to economic, political and ethical intelligence.

Walking down the dumb binary track of safety = injuries keeps Safety in the dark ages and holds it back from ever becoming professional. Without a transdisciplinary approach (; ) things like vision impairment as a cause of death get filed in the safety silence filing cabinet ( along with all the person-centric issues that are of no interest to the AIHS BoK.

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