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Tribunal says employee who rode banister deserved firing

February 24, 1997

LONDON (AP) _ An employee who celebrated a deal with several drinks followed by a disastrous slide down a banister deserved to be fired, an industrial tribunal ruled Monday.

Diane Williams, 34, fell 12 feet from the banister last July, and was found unconscious and bleeding. After she recovered, minus a tooth, she was dismissed by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

``I took the view that anybody who climbed on to the banister and slid down it would have to be extremely drunk or crazy. It is a frightening drop,″ said her manager, George Davies. He said her actions ``were both reckless and extraordinary.″

Personnel manager Janet Nicolas told the tribunal that Ms. Williams had undermined the trust of her superiors.

``I would not expect somebody to sit on a banister and slide down it in a professional body where members display a certain decorum,″ Ms. Nicolas added.

Ms. Williams, who has since found another job, said she admitted making a mistake but thought dismissal was unfair.

``They don’t have a sense of humor, they don’t know how to enjoy themselves,″ she said of her former employers.

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