Sunday, 16 December 2012

Elven Safety

There can be no doubt that Middle Earth is a dangerous place. There are hordes of rampaging orcs and goblins, trolls, giant spiders, ring-wraithes, etcetera that pose a great danger to life and limb. However after going to see the first part of "The Hobbit" last night, I realised that there is a much more insidious danger lurking in the land.

But to start on a positive, it was good to see that Rivendell has had a damn good sweep. I was greatly concerned that throughout the “Lord Of The Rings” trilogy, the amount of fallen leaves lying around last homely house, combined with the spray from numerous waterfalls, constituted a serious slip hazard. I can only put this down to the fact that in the relatively peaceful times before the War of the Ring there must have been more time available for domestic chores.

But the real reason for this post is to highlight the total lack of health and safety considerations in Middle Earth civil engineering projects. Why is it that none of the races of Elves, Men or Dwarves have considered it prudent to build parapets on their bridges? It seems that the Dwarves are the worst culprits in as much as their bridges in such places as Moria and Erebor are built with such large spans over such deep caverns. Surely the number of accidents from the citizenry accidentally falling over the edges must far outstrip casualties from orc raids? At least the orcs and goblins have rope bridges that provide a hand hold.

And don’t get me started on the number of steep stairways without handrails or banisters………………….