Health & Safety Responsibilities
All persons at work have a general duty to ensure the health and safety of anyone who could be affected by the work that they do.
The responsible person has a number of specific legal duties to carry out in fulfilling this responsibility. It is important to note that in a traditional golf club management structure (where there is a Committee operating as the Senior Board) the responsible person is generally classed as the Golf Club Captain. In more typical limited company structures this role falls to the Managing Director.
The responsible person(s) who fail in their general duty of care or fail to carry out other legal obligations face the possibility of substantial fines and / or imprisonment.
The Responsible Person must:
- Identify the extent of any legal obligations based on the work that the business carries out
- Provide and maintain safe systems of work
- Ensure that equipment, articles and substances can be used, handled, stored and transported safely
- Provide adequate information, instruction, training and supervision
- Provide and maintain a safe workplace with safe access to and from it
- Provide and maintain a safe working environment with adequate facilities and arrangements for welfare
- Provide a written Health and Safety policy if the business has five employees or more
- Conduct risk assessments for any work activities, identifying the significant risks and your method of control. Where five or more people are employed these must be recorded
- Consult employees when implementing, changing or checking health and safety arrangements
- Ensure that individuals who may come in contact with the business, other than employees, are safe
- Ensure people who are not in your employment receive information about aspects of the work being undertaken that might affect their health or safety
It is important to follow the steps below with regards to a responsible person's health and safety obligations:
STEP 1: ASSESS WORKING PRACTICES
- Decide whether the responsible person has the competence to assess risk and if not, get assistance
- Identify all places where work is carried out, including offsite, in vehicles and at other sites. Ensure that all activities undertaken are covered by suitable and sufficient risk assessments while doing this
STEP 2: SET A POLICY & COMMUNICATE
- Put a health and safety policy in place. This should be written down and displayed prominently in the workplace if the club employs more than five people
- Provide information about hazards, risks and the necessary controls in a clear and comprehensible form to anyone who may be affected by what the club does
- Ensure each employee receives an adequate induction program
- Establish a means of communication with employees to enable health and safety concerns to be addressed
STEP 3: MONITOR & REVIEW THE SITUATION
- The club must continually monitor health and safety as part of their duties including carrying out risk assessments wherever necessary on a regular basis
- Appoint a health and safety committee, if necessary, ensure it has a sufficient number of employees involved
Questions to Consider
- Have you identified the responsible person(s) for the golf club?
- Are those persons aware of their responsibilities?
- Where necessary have the tasks to ensure that these responsibilities are discharged been delegated?
The above guidance provides an introduction on the main requirements needed to adequately manage this health and safety topic. If you require further guidance, risk assessments or template documentation on this subject please consult your relevant full guidance health and safety website (BIGGA, England Golf, Scottish Golf, Wales Golf). If you do not hold the log in details for this website, for your club, please speak to your golf club management team to identify who the account administrator is and request the details.