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Welcome Back, Don't get Squished

After 2.5 years out of the library world (home with kids), I am back in a brand new city's public library.

One of my first days, I was taken down to the basement (staff only) stacks. It was my first encounter with rolling stacks, and I was told "Now, most of these stacks don't stay apart, so you want to get the book as quickly as possible, or brace yourself against each side as you get your books, so you don't get squished."
Hello! Heath and Safety? Not so much in this place. Just "Don't get squished." It's like a trip to the Death Star's trash compactor.

Good thing I'm young and spry.


( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 2nd, 2013 12:33 am (UTC)
What?! Are they the electronic ones or hand cranked? Either way, they are meant to stay apart and the fact that they don't means they are very definitely broken and is a major safety violation.
Mar. 2nd, 2013 01:52 am (UTC)
you sure they weren't hazing the new kid?
Mar. 2nd, 2013 04:22 am (UTC)
That was my thought as well.
Mar. 3rd, 2013 12:41 am (UTC)
Nope, it was brought up at a meeting later in the week. They are looking into getting stoppers for them.
Mar. 4th, 2013 05:26 pm (UTC)
wow, I'm amazed such a hazardous condition would be acceptable at a workplace.
Mar. 2nd, 2013 10:54 am (UTC)
A large library near me has moving stacks with electric motors. They have sensors that detect people, but I was told what happened to a metal stool one day.

I imagine a mystery novel where the perpetrator disables the sensor and gets the head librarian.
Mar. 4th, 2013 05:27 pm (UTC)
I have a librarian friend who has joked a few times about writing that book. We want the victim to be a library director, though.
Mar. 2nd, 2013 02:29 pm (UTC)
We have 5 rolling stacks in our rare book room and they are just moved by hand, no motors or cranks... So I know how you feel. They usually stay apart but as they move with a touch they are never locked in place and freak me out when I'm on my hands and knees at the bottom shelves.
Mar. 2nd, 2013 07:19 pm (UTC)
We have hand-cranked compact shelving and while it does freak people out when a row starts moving towards you unexpectedly, it's highly unlikely that you'll get "squished". To prove that point to our student workers, one of our staff members volunteered to stand in a row while we cranked him in. The result of our highly unscientific study is that there's not enough torque on the hand cranks to do more than make someone uncomfortable if they get caught between rows.

Caveat - don't try this at home, though.
Mar. 3rd, 2013 03:19 am (UTC)
Also, before things get to that point, you will hear some yell.
Mar. 6th, 2013 06:08 pm (UTC)
I've been told that ours have the same problem. They are electronic so I always turn it off after I move to the shelving I need. If I don't have time for that, I just take my cart in there with me. Hopefully it will stop it from crushing me to much or give me time to get out.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

Authority Record

the fuck
The Society for Librarians* Who Say "Motherfucker"
For all of those times when the gatekeepers of the world's knowledge are called upon, in their professional capacity, to use the word "motherfucker." Or at least to seriously consider it.

*Open to librarians; library associates, specialists, technicians, and paraprofessionals of all kinds; library school students; library aides and volunteers; and all of those who love libraries, or even just love a particular librarian. Welcome.

Date Due

November 2015
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