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Question about liability/responsibility


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#1 DarkHorizons

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 10:21

Hi,

I work as a sys admin in the IT dept. of an SMB. Me and the team keep being asked to replace the fluorescent tubes above the desks of staff. We do not like replacing these as the light fittings have quite vicious looking metal grills, my concern is if the grill fell on somebody after fitting it back it could cause a nasty head injury. Is it unreasonable of us to refuse to refit these grills? There is no clear liability should these cause injury. We are happy to replace the bulb but no refit the grill, the staff are not happy about us refusing to refit the lighting grills and do no appreciate our concern.

This is the only company I've worked for where anything with an electrical plug on it, or an electrical current running through it is 'an IT related issue'. I do not feel it is the responsibility of the IT department, but building and maintenance.

Any thoughts or opinions?


#2 +zhiVago

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 10:24

I do not feel it is the responsibility of the IT department, but building and maintenance.


(Y)

Tell them you didn't get your IT education to replace bulbs.

#3 Aheer.R.S.

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 10:27

Zhivago has a point, that's maintainence, or general maintenence, not IT

#4 +zhiVago

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 10:34

Additionally, some jurisdictions require a license for these sorts of things (all electric-related work) precisely for liability/responsibility concerns.

#5 Nick H.

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 10:42

Ask them why they can't do it themselves.

#6 Aheer.R.S.

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:06

my concern is if the grill fell on somebody after fitting it back it could cause a nasty head injury. Is it unreasonable of us to refuse to refit these grills?

Additionally, some jurisdictions require a license for these sorts of things (all electric-related work) precisely for liability/responsibility concerns.

This. (Y)
This is why nowadays you're more likely going to see when those tubes need replacing, you'll see a maintenence person, with a cordon, a ladder and a toolbelt full of screwdrivers, overkill though it may be, it's for precisely that reason, just in case the grille hasn't been correctly refitted. and just like Zhivago said the second time, electrical engineers nowadays generally have their own certificate of liability. If you don't have one of those................

#7 He's Dead Jim

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:08

How many IT consultants does it take to change a...?

:D

#8 Aheer.R.S.

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:10

How many IT consultants does it take to change a...?

:D

lol I WAS tempted...

#9 sc302

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 16:31

If it has a plug or batteries it is in the domain of IT in a smb. Suck it up and let the company worry about liability. You work for the company and the company will get sued not you.

#10 Detection

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 16:33

Ask them to sign a disclaimer before getting you to fit it, so if it falls you are not liable

#11 McKay

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 16:40

Ask them if it's a computer, when they say "no" ask them why you rang you. And then tell them to ask the Chefs.

#12 Stoffel

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 17:04

I find it very sad you have to worry about something like this these days.

#13 ajcdotme

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 17:11

I have to be honest here and say that most job descriptions include a clause along the lines of "other duties as assigned".

Provided you are not performing work which requires a permit, license, or other certification, I suspect you're best to just do it.

However, I would respectfully raise your concerns about preparedness for this task, ensure you have the appropriate tools to do it (including safety equipment) and be absolutely certain that the work you perform adheres to local electrical/building code AS WELL AS requirements of your company's insurance (both in terms of building/infrastructure stability and liability should something go wrong, short, burn down, or fall on someone's head).

#14 tim_s

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Posted 17 February 2013 - 02:08

I am assuming this is a small company?