Now health chiefs ban bobbing for apples .

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Now health chiefs ban bobbing for apples .

Post by Digger on Sat 30 Oct 2010, 2:21 pm

Dangerous? Young boy bobbing for apples in the traditional way
Hundreds of children were banned from putting their faces in water to bob for apples on health and safety grounds - and told to use chopsticks instead.Organisers of the mass 'bob' in Manchester claimed they changed the rules of the 2,000-year-old Halloween game to prevent the risk of spreading germs.The news comes just days after an eye doctor in Southampton warned that over-eager children taking part in the tradition risked injuries caused by 'impact' with the fruit.
But health chiefs in Greater Manchester insisted there was no evidence apple bobbing spread disease - while a children's play expert appealed for organisers to use 'common sense'.The ban was enforced at the annual 'Apple Day' at the Parrs Wood Rural Studies Centre in Didsbury, Manchester. Youngsters at the event were handed chopsticks and told to fish apples out of a barrel - rather than using their mouths. Organiser Geoff Bridson said: 'We have always been very careful because we have two or three hundred children coming to the centre each year. We don't want them to spread germs like colds and flu by putting their faces in the same bowl of water.
'People are more sensitive about things like that these days. The game was to fish the apples out with chopsticks instead - which is actually more difficult.'Kevin Perrett, a consultant in public health medicine at NHS Manchester, said there was little risk of infection. He said: 'We are not aware of any specific infection risks associated with apple bobbing, or of any expert advice that this sort of activity is unsafe. Any risk of infection must be very low.'
Author and children's play expert Sue Palmer said: 'There has to be a point when you say, 'Let's apply some common sense to this'.
The chances of catching some kind of disease from taking part in an apple bobbing activity seem remote. We have to start teaching children common sense for themselves.'The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health said there was no reason apple bobbing should be cancelled on health and safety grounds. Richard Jones, ISOH policy and technical director, said: 'There's nothing in any health and safety legislation that prevents this from happening.'If someone is concerned that a community activity has health and safety implications, they should seek professional advice. And after all, if parents are concerned about it they can always withdraw their child.'The warning comes two days after Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust told youngsters to wear goggles while bobbing for apples.
Ophthalmologist Parwez Hossain saidthree people were admitted to the hospital with apple bobbing injurieslast year.
He added: ‘Casualty staff have seen children and adultsturning up on Halloween with scratches on the cornea and eye injuriesfrom impacts caused by apple bobbing.The tradition of bobbing for apples dates back to the Roman invasion of Britain, when the conquering army merged their own celebrations with traditional Celtic festivals.

How did we live so long with all these hidden dangers we had to endure?

"The best way to predict the future is to invent it".


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Re: Now health chiefs ban bobbing for apples .

Post by Thistle on Sat 30 Oct 2010, 2:26 pm

almost as bad as having to wear googles to play conkers lol x

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