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HSE responds to The Daily Record article on Fairy Liquid being banned from Scottish tax office as ‘non-approved’ chemical

24 July 2013
“Washing up war: Fairy Liquid is banned from Scottish tax office as ‘non-approved’ chemical” – Daily Record, 22 July 2013

Sir, Your readers will be reassured to know that the Health and Safety Executive doesn’t regard Fairy Liquid as a major industrial hazard (Daily Record, 22 July, page 19).

Whatever HMRC’s reasons for refusing to allow the use of this particular product at its offices in East Kilbride, it is not because there is anything in health and safety legislation that prohibits it.

We see hundreds of stories each year in which health and safety is blamed incorrectly for an unnecessary or overzealous restriction. So much so that we’ve set up a panel of experts to help people challenge daft decisions

These stories might raise a smile, but we should keep our minds on what health and safety legislation is really there to do – ensuring everyone can return home to their families, safe and well, from their day’s work.


David Snowball
Director Scotland & Northern England
Health & Safety Executive
Belford House
59 Belford Road
Edinburgh EH4 3UE