We prepare young people with skills for life. But this also needs to happen in a safe environment.
As part of our programme, we regularly teach our young people how to be safe, in real life and online, through badges, resources, videos and in instructions with particular activities.
Some of these resources and videos can be found on the Scouts website here.
We follow the Safety Policy of the Scout Association. Scouting should be provided in a safe manner without risk to health, so far as is reasonably practicable. We believe this is just as important as running the activity itself.
It is the responsibility of all adults in Scouts ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that:
- all activities take place in a safe way without risk to the health of those involved;
- we provide and maintain equipment and buildings that is safe for all and without risk to health;
- information, instruction, training and supervision is provided to ensure the health
and safety of all those involved in Scouting activities or who may be affected by them;
- appropriate arrangements are made to ensure safety and the absence of risks to health in
connection with the use, transport, storage and handling of equipment, and substances which are
inherently or potentially dangerous.
The Group Executive committee is ultimately responsible for ensuring the safe running of activities within the group and safety arrangements for the HQ. Many of the functions are completed collectively, such as ensuring all activities are properly risk assessed, while others, such as specific checking of safety equipment, are delegated to one member of the committee.
The Group Scout Leader, Barry Stride, is responsible for ensuring that volunteers within the group are properly trained for their role and the correct enquiries have been made and that accidents are investigated.
Risk Assessing is one way in which we run safe activities and keep our HQ in good order. Leaders are trained to complete these assessments as part of their scout training and they complete risk assessments for any activity undertaken.
As well as these, there are also risk assessments written for use of the HQ. These are updated each year and it is the responsibility of the Group Executive committee for their completion and implementation. Paper copies can be found in the kitchen in the HQ Safety Folder and online versions can be found below.
The video below details the risk assessment process:
HQ Risk assessment
Contains full details of common risks to injury found in the hall and what the group does to minimise these risks and what more can be done to reduce these risks further.
It is the responsibility of all section leaders and leaders of groups using the hall to:
- read this risk assessment and follow its instructions
- carry out their own risk assessments for specific activities carried out within the HQ building and grounds
- ensure the placing of objects in the hall does not cause a hazard to its users or obstructs any evacuation routes
- report any defects to the fabric of the building or its contents immediately and make safe.
Defects to the building or its contents should be recorded on the reporting form located in the cleaner’s cupboard and to the Group Scout Leader as soon as possible.
This risk assessment was made with reference to the Scout Association’s fact sheet Managing a Safe Scout Premises (FS320010). A paper copy is located in the HQ Safety Folder.
HQ Fire risk assessment
The group is required to carry out a Fire risk assessment as part of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 which requires the group to consider the causes of fire in the HQ, and the risk to the users of the hall should a fire begin.
The fire risk assessment for the HQ is formed of two documents: the record of significant findings consists of observations made during the risk assessment process while the context and emergency procedures document provides information about the HQ and the measures in place to tackle any fires and to evacuate the users of the hall.
It is the responsibility of all section leaders and leaders of groups using the hall to read this plan, tell their members about the evacuation plan and complete an evacuation drill at least once a year.
This risk assessment was made with reference to the Scout Association’s fact sheet Managing Fire Safety (FS320007) and documents issued by the government to help with completing a fire risk assessment. Paper copies are available in the HQ Safety Folder.
- Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005: A Short Guide to Making Your Premises Safe From Fire.
- Fire safety risk assessment: small and medium place of assembly.
Working at height
Working at height can often occur in scouting but it is a much riskier activity than many believe. The risk assessment for this covers use of the provided stepladders and the ladder onto the balcony as well as retrieval of objects and carrying on the ladder.
In general, items should not be stored at height unless there are measures in place to store it safely. It is the responsibility of users of the hall to read this assessment and follow its instructions.
There are two parts to the working at height risk assessment: an overview giving the basics of the equipment provided and how to use it and a detailed risk assessment which includes ways of reducing the risks further.
This risk assessment was made with reference to the Scout Association’s fact sheet Falls from Height (FS320009) and documents issued by the Health and Safety Executive. Paper copies of all are located in the HQ Safety Folder:
Control of Substances Harmful to Health (C.O.S.H.H.)
It is important that anything that could potentially be harmful is controlled correctly.
At present risk assessments have been provided for all the cleaning substances that any section has access to in the cleaning cupboard. Paper copies of these are available in the C.O.S.H.H. folder located in the cleaning cupboard.
If other substances are located in other locked locations around the HQ then it is the leader’s responsibility to ensure that they have been properly assessed.
There is some advice from the Health and Safety executive on this topic that is relevant to the scout group. Paper copies of these can be found in the HQ Safety folder:
- Working with substances hazardous to health: A brief guide to COSHH.
- Diluting chemical concentrates: COSHH essentials for service and retail (SR2).
- Manual cleaning and disinfecting surfaces: COSHH essentials for service and retail (SR4).
- Ready-for-use insecticide sprays and dusts: COSHH essentials for service and retail (SR7).
- Storing chemical products (small scale): COSHH essentials for service and retail (SR24).
- Controlling cooking fumes: COSHH essentials for service and retail (SR27).
The HQ’s asbestos register can be found in the HQ Safety Folder in the kitchen. It contains the location of all known Asbestos Containing Materials (ACMs) in the HQ as well as some specimens that were tested and returned false.
All ACMs are labelled as such but the register should be checked prior to any work to determine if any ACMs may exist. They are also visually inspected periodically to ensure there is no additional damage to them. If you are carrying out any major work on the building, the register should be check first to ensure no accidental damage.
All users of the hall who provide food have responsibilities to handle food safely. A succinct summary of best practice and legal requirements is contained in the Scout Association factsheet Food Safety in Scouting (FS320003).
Thanks to a kind donation from within our community, our HQ is equipped with an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). It is easy to use and has simple visual and spoken instructions.
Users of the hall can watch the video below to find out how to use the AED.