Cleaning Hazards

                        [From risks digest 18.28]
"For several months, our nurses have been baffled to find a dead patient in 
the same bed every Friday morning," a spokeswoman for the Pelonomi Hospital 
(Free State, South Africa) told reporters. "There was no apparent cause for 
any of the deaths, and extensive checks on the air conditioning system, and 
a search for possible bacterial infection, failed to reveal any clues."
"However, further inquiries have now revealed the cause of these deaths.  It 
seems that every Friday morning a cleaner would enter the ward, remove the 
plug that powered the patient's life support system, plug her floor polisher 
into the socket, and commence polishing. When she had finished her chores, 
she would plug the life support machine back in and leave, unaware that the 
patient was now dead. She could not, after all, hear the screams and 
eventual death rattle over the whirring of her polisher.
"We are sorry, and have sent a strong letter to the cleaner in question. 
Further, the Free State Health and Welfare Department is arranging for an 
electrician to fit an extra socket, so there should be no repetition of this 
incident. The enquiry is now closed."
(From the Cape Times, 6/13/96; the headline was "Cleaner Polishes Off 

Thanks for a fwd from (Richard Saum)

This page was created by David Saum.