A health centre has removed its water cooler during the hottest week of the year over fears people will slip on spills.
Central Canvey Primary Care Centre says the decision was taken for the ‘safety of all visitors’.
A spokesman said ‘Drinking water will always be available and visitors can request this from reception’.
But the timing of the removal has caused ripples, especially as temperatures reached a scorching 33C (91.4F).
Local councillor Janice Payne has urged the health centre to change its mind, saying ‘Of course this is Health & Safety gone mad. If they have had spillages then they should put a sign up that says there is a risk of wet floors due to water being splashed about’.
Ms Payne adds ‘It is crazy, particularly when the weather is like this’.
Local resident Charlie Davy, commented ‘A woman at the reception said she would always offer water to those who asked. Like always it’s the generals behind the scenes making the bullets for those on the front line to fire and receive flak’.
Other residents spoke of their surprise at the ban. Jeanette Jones said ‘It’s the snowflake generation at it again. I didn’t even realise the machine had been removed but it does not surprise me. It is over the top to remove it, especially when the weather is so hot.’
She added ‘Some Health & Safety makes sense but this is totally over the top – probably off the back of a few kids spilling a bit of water’.
The medical provider has defended the policy by saying the safety of patients and visitors was ‘paramount’.
In a statement, it said ‘Due to water spillages arising from inappropriate use of the water coolers, we have had to undertake a review and upon the recommendation of the Water Safety Group concluded that drinking water would be best supplied from an area managed by the health centre staff’.