Innocent techie jailed for taking hours to fix storage

Hello, hello … what have we here? One very dangerous storage admin, if I'm not mistaken

On Call As Friday rolls around, The Register knows many readers are a little fatigued. Which is why we use this day to bring a fresh instalment of On Call – the weekly reader contributed column we hope amuses you enough to shake off a week of tech support torpor and traipse into the weekend with a smile on your dial.

This week, meet a reader we'll Regomize as "Julian" who specialized in maintenance of big tape libraries – the sort of thing with fancy robotics to move tapes in and out of multiple drives.

Libraries of this size were so capacious they were usually shared resources, so finding a moment in which all users were happy for downtime was never easy. Julian was therefore often called out for big jobs that involved both maintenance and repairs.

One such job took place at a police station, where the local constabulary did everything by the book.

Julian arrived and spent nine long hours working on the library, finally restoring it to perfect working order.

"Where are you off to now?" one of the officers asked Julian as he packed up.

Julian explained that he would return to base to collect more spare parts so he could get to his next job, whenever that might be.

"How long is the drive?" the officer asked.

Julian replied it was about an hour away, plus more time to get home or to another job – he wasn't sure what was coming next.

"You're not doing that," the officer replied. "In fact, into this cell you go!"

The reason for Julian's incarceration was that he had worked more hours than were allowed – under a regulation he was never quite able to pin down – and was deemed too tired to travel safely.

The officer was therefore observing regulations, even if it meant Julian spent a night in the cells.

Julian didn't entirely mind: the officer also took his pager, so his boss couldn't dispatch him to another job.

Have rules prevented you from working ? Or traveling to work? Here's our rule: if you have a story in this vein, you must immediately click here to send On Call an email so we can see if it meets our strict requirements for an appearance on a future Friday. ®

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