No, it's not a GCSE maths question:
Householders in Little Lever, near Bolton, Greater Manchester, had assumed that the mattress would be promptly removed by one or two workers after it was reported to the local authority.Oh, this'll be good!
But they had failed to take into account the health and safety requirements of Bolton Metropolitan Council.
An official was duly dispatched to the scene to carry out a risk assessment.Naturally!
He decided that the only safe way to shift the mattress was to scoop it up in a 1.7 ton JCB digger – an operation that would require the services of a driver, a banksman to guide him, and two officials to make sure it was done properly.Well, why not? It's only money, right?
Sadly for the council employees, the actual owners of that money thought they could resolve this themselves:
The council said it could be a week before the item was removed but a local councillor and a cafe owner then joined forces to drag it onto the roadside and on Monday the mattress was taken off to a nearby tip in the back of a council van.Driven by a council workman whose strength is as the strength of ten because his heart is pure? Or who simply isn't aware of the need for a full team to remove one mattress?
Bolton Council confirmed that the on-site assessment had been carried out by a trainee with the council’s “performance and improvement team”.Ah. I see. A trainee.
Well, that makes sense. If he'd been a fully qualified council worker, he'd have concluded that at least four officials would have been needed to make sure it was done properly, not two...