MANUAL OF SAFETY - Section 26
POLICY ON SAFETY IN SPORT AND STUDENT ACTIVITIES
Lancaster University encourages and promotes participation in sport for students,
staff and visitors. Participating in sport at all levels involves some elements of
physical risk. This policy considers how risks can be kept to a minimum.
The University has a legal duty to ensure in so far as is reasonably practicable, the
health, safety and welfare of participants in sport when it is played as part of the
operations of the University, and this extends to students, staff and visitors. The
University’s commitment to the health, safety and welfare of students, staff and
visitors is enshrined in the University Safety Policy.
Sport is undertaken at the University through the Student Union, its clubs and
societies and the Sports Centre. Facilities for playing sport are provided and
maintained by Estates. Whilst recognising the different management responsibilities
of the Students Union, Sports Centre and Estates this document aims to achieve
appropriate standards for controlling the risks in sport for which the University has
2.1 Sports Activity
Sports activity includes the activity itself, equipment, facilities and associated
operational arrangements including transport to off campus events. It also
includes the activities of all constituent organisations of the Students' Union.
2.2 Student Activity
Student activity includes the activities of all constituent organisations of the
2.3 Constituent Organisations
Constituent Organisations of the Students' Union include all Union committees,
organisations and groups operating under the Students' Union constitution and
also all recognised and affiliated Clubs and Societies.
3 Safety Standards
The University has adopted National Governing Body guidelines as the minimum
standard in controlling significant risks to health and safety in sport. Where National
Governing Body guidelines do not exist for an activity, appropriate local guidelines
will be adopted as a minimum standard.
The British Universities and Colleges Physical Education Association (BUCPEA) has
produced a manual entitled ‘Safe Sport in Universities -- A Guide’. The codes of
Manual of Safety Section 26 Page 1 Revised: May 2000
practice contained in this document should be referred to as a guide to controlling
4.1 It is the responsibility of the General Manager of the Students Union, the
Director of Sport and Physical Recreation and the Director of Estates to arrange
for a suitable and sufficient risk assessment of all activities (as defined in
paragraph 2) over which they have control. They are responsible to the Vice
Chancellor or that person acting on his behalf for carrying out risk assessments.
4.2 The University’s policy on risk assessments is contained in section 17 of
the Manual of Safety. The policy and general guidelines of that document
should be taken into consideration when carrying out risk assessments of
4.3. Where risk assessments have identified significant risks the department
must produce documentation, for example in the form of a Safety Handbook,
that details the risks identified by the assessment and outline the measures that
need to be taken to eliminate or minimise them.
5 Role of the University
There is an interdependence between the Students Union, Sports Centre and
Estates for the provision of Sports Activities. However, because of the managerial
independence of these departments, the success of the policy requires co-operation
between them in order to achieve a compatible standard for all users. Therefore the
role of the University is to co-ordinate and advise those departments on good
practice and to facilitate the necessary co-operation.
The University accepts its legal responsibility to ensure and monitor safety both
within sports and other student activities and it reserves a right of veto over any trip
or activity undertaken by constituent organisations of the Students' Union. The right
of veto may be exercised by the University Secretary, the General Manager of the
Students' Union, the Director of Sport and Physical Recreation and the Director of
Estates as appropriate to their safety responsibilities.
Appendix 1 is an organisational chart which shows the lines of responsibility and
lines of co-operation with regard to this policy.
6 Role of the Students Union
The Students Union has operational responsibility for its constituent organisations.
The Students Union therefore, via the General Manager, takes managerial
responsibility for implementation of health and safety policy within its constituent
organisations. The Students Union will ensure that it has the appropriate
administrative mechanisms to monitor the constituent organisations' compliance with
this policy and that the measures identified to control the risks are being
The Officers of constituent organisations, under the guidance of the Students Union
and after training, will carry out the risk assessments described in paragraph 4. They
Manual of Safety Section 26 Page 2 Revised: May 2000
will perform the assessments in accordance with the procedures adopted by the
Students Union which are described in Appendix 2.
7 Role of The Sports Centre
The Sports Centre provides sports facilities, equipment and activities for students,
staff and the general public. It is the responsibility of the Sports Centre to ensure
that safety standards of the services that it provides are consistent for all its users
and in accordance with this policy. In providing its services the Sports Centre will
take into account the safety obligations of the Students Unions and Estates.
8 Role of Estates
Estates provide and maintain the building fabric of the Sports Centre, outdoor
sporting facilities and grounds. It is the responsibility of Estates to maintain those
areas in accordance with the standards indicated in paragraph 3 and enable the
Sports Centre and the Students Union to fulfil their safety obligations.
9 Role of the Officials and Members of the Constituent Organisations of
the Students' Union
The officials of constituent organisations are responsible for carrying out
comprehensive risk assessments on behalf of the General Manager of the Students’
Union. Responsibility for determining how risks are controlled, for documenting,
implementing and monitoring procedures and for disseminating information to
members of constituent organisations will rest with the Students’ Union, in
consultation with the officials of the constituent organisations.
Members of constituent organisations will abide by those control measures identified
and documented by the risk assessments carried out by those organisations.
This Section of the Manual of Safety was approved by the University Safety Committee on
27 January 1998 and amended at the meetings on 19 October 1998, and 18 May 1999
Manual of Safety Section 26 Page 3 Revised: May 2000
ORGANISATION FOR SAFETY IN SPORT AND STUDENT ACTIVITIES
Health and Safety Committee
University Secretary Pro Vice-Chancellor Director of Finance
University Safety and Radiation General Manager of Director of Sport and Director of Estates
Protection Officer the Students’ Union Physical Recreation
Sports Safety Group Maintenance
Direct line of FUNCTIONAL LINE LINE OF
responsibility OF RESPONSIBILITY CO-OPERATION
Manual of Safety Section 26 Page 4 Revised: May 2000
Lancaster University Students Union
Safety Framework for Student Activities
Lancaster University provides for the recreational and social needs of its students
through the provision of facilities and activities supported and promoted by the
constituent organisations of the Students Union.
Lancaster University recognises a responsibility towards students involved in
activities whether they are organised by the Students Union or pursued
independently. Through the University Policy for Safety in Sport and Student
Activities clear procedures exist. In this the Students Union, Sports Centre and
Estates Office all agree to undertake to agree on a defined set of criteria aimed at
reducing the risks attached to such activities.
This safety framework is intended to provide recommended safe practices for the
activities that make up the constituent organisations of Lancaster University Students
Union and its activities.
The term 'Constituent Organisations of LUSU' is defined as all Union committees,
organisations and groups operating under the LUSU constitution and also all
recognised and affiliated Clubs and Societies hereafter called 'Organisations'.
The term ‘Officers’ hereafter refers to all student officers of LUSU and its constituent
The term ‘Staff’ refers to LUSU staff members.
The term 'Members' means members of LUSU and/or its constituent organisations.
The aim is to ensure the highest possible standards in safe practice within these
constituent organisations both off and on campus.
1.1 The Role of the University
The role of the University is focused on advising the Students Union on safe practice
within the activities of its constituent organisations.
The University is in no position either in terms of resources or constitutionally, to
attempt to manage the procedures within the Students Union. However, it does
accept legislative responsibility to ensure and monitor safety within the organised
activities of the Students Union.
The University ultimately reserves the right of veto over any activity undertaken by
any of the constituent organisations within LUSU. The General Manager as the
senior permanent officer of the Students Union is responsible for ensuring
compliance with safety policies and is empowered to act either in person or through
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In keeping with its duty of care, the University should help the Students Union
develop its procedures through liaison with the University Safety Office and regular
joint appraisal meetings with the Sports Centre and Estates Staff. This interface
provides the opportunity for the University to express decisions and advice from
higher committees and to inform and advise on changes and modifications in
legislation as well as an opportunity for the Students Union to express the concerns
of its committees.
The University's aim is to support and encourage the development of a framework.
To facilitate this the University will, where possible, offer advice and consider the
financial implications of safety in agreeing the Union's budget
1.2 The Role of the Students Union
The Students Union has operational responsibility for the activities of its constituent
organisations as well as the facilities under its control.
The Union has a duty of care to ensure that its officers and committee members of
these organisations who are responsible for organising activities, take all appropriate
safety measures. It is effectively the manager of the safety systems. The Students
Union via the General Manager, will ensure that it has appropriate administrative
mechanisms to cope with the demands of such safety procedures
1.3 The Role of the Constituent Organisations
Officers, staff, committees and members have a crucial part to play in ensuring risks
are assessed and managed before activities take place. Officers and committees
should be aware of the implications of duty of care as it relates to their activity or
activities and be both familiar with this safety framework and any guidelines
published and adopted by governing organisations such as the National Governing
Body Codes of Conduct summary published by the British Universities and Colleges
Physical Education Association (BUCPEA).
Failure to fulfil roles and responsibilities towards safety may result in disciplinary
action and this may result in Union recognised status being withdrawn. Officers of
these organisations should also be aware of their responsibility to disseminate
information through the membership of their organisation and proactively work
towards the development of safe practices within the organisation. All organisations
of LUSU should have an officer with designated responsibility for safety on their
The University and the Students Union both have clear roles to play in the
development of safe practice in the organisation of student activities of all kinds.
With regular communication and consultation it is possible to achieve a workable
policy that ensures reasonable care is taken at all times.
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2. Managing The Risk
This framework is intended to create systems of safe practice to be adopted and
implemented by the constituent, recognised and affiliated organisations of Lancaster
University Students Union (LUSU) in the organisation of their activities.
The aim is to remove, or at the very least, reduce the possibilities of injury occurring
through negligence on our behalf.
Every effort has been made to ensure that the framework is as comprehensive in its
approach to the types of activities and their associated risks as possible. This has in
turn led to the creation of new and sometimes complicated procedures.
Much of this will require time to become established since a major part of its success
will rely on the development of an overall culture of safety at all levels of participation
The Framework has been designed to:
1. Involve the University in the issue of safety within student activities
2. Remove the culpability of individuals
3. Ensure that novice participants are monitored and receive sound instruction in
relevant basic skills
4. Create a situation where safety is a valid and important consideration to
everyone, encouraging activity leaders and organisers to assess and manage
5. Emphasise personal responsibilities and the awareness of the actions of
others in relation to the retention of life and limb.
2.2 Governing Organisations and Professional Guidance
Where guidelines exist for safe practice in activities the Student Activities Officer will
issue them at the start of every academic year to the relevant activities. These will
generally be concerned with sports and outdoor pursuits.
Where there are no governing body or local guidelines for activities then a set of
procedures will be agreed in consultation with officers of the organisation concerned,
the Student Activities Officer and the University Safety Officer.
This will also apply where one-off events are planned and no guidelines are
All planned activities must undergo a risk assessment and a code of practice drawn
The Union will insist that affiliation to governing organisations and professional
organisations are made where such affiliations enable competition entry and/or
provides compulsory insurance or where it is compulsory for an organisation to do
The Constituent Organisation
For sport and outdoor pursuits there will often be governing organisations which
issue codes of practice. It is important that those responsible for the running of such
activities maintain close contact with the governing body that represents them in
order to maintain up-to-date information. Changes should in turn be implemented
Manual of Safety Section 26 Page 7 Revised: May 2000
within the activity code of practice for the individual organisation's activity. This
should always be done in consultation with the Student Activities Officer.
In all cases legislation relating to organisations and activities must be adhered to
where it exists.
The organisation will ensure that where either competition entry or insurance is
compulsory for its activity that it affiliates to the national governing body or
professional organisation for their activity. Information regarding safe practice for an
activity would not normally be denied by a governing body to non-members.
2.3 Risk Assessments and Codes of Practice
The Union will provide risk assessment training for activities and assist the
organisation with the compilation of its safety code of practice. Copies of these
codes of practice will be held within the Union. The Union will provide assistance,
advice and guidance for all of its constituent organisations where risk assessments
and codes of practice are needed for events and activities especially where they
might be unique. Where necessary it will seek further advice and guidance from the
University Safety Office.
The Constituent Organisation
The organisation will carry out a risk assessment for its activities and will produce a
safety code of practice for its activities. In the case of a club or society the contents
of the code of practice will be made available to all members of the organisation and
will be read by prospective new members before joining. Members of clubs and
societies will need to sign a membership form indicating that they have read the
safety code of practice and agree to abide by it. In other cases the running of the
organisation will be incorporated in the safety code of practice and will be adhered
Organisations may on occasions need to produce single risk assessments of unique,
Officers must ensure that all aspects of their safety code of practice are adhered to
at all times.
2.4 Duty of Care
At the start of every academic year the Student Activities Officer will make two
presentations based on Duty of Care. The Grounds Superintendent, Sports Centre
Director, Estates Office, Sabbatical Officers and Inter College Chairpeople will be
invited to attend. In addition to this the Presidents and Safety Officers of the
constituent organisations of LUSU will be invited. A similar session will also be run
within the context of New Officer Training provided for newly elected JCR executives
and other newly elected officers of the union.
The purpose of the presentation is to inform all representatives involved in activities
of their duty of care, the need to take their responsibilities seriously and to ensure
that they adhere to safety guidelines.
The importance of administration and procedures will be strongly reinforced.
A copy of this framework will be issued at this meeting.
The Constituent Organisation
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Attendance of organisation officers and LUSU officers is mandatory at the
appropriate presentation as set out above. Non attendance may result in the
suspension of the organisation from the Students Union and access to University
facilities or other penalties (as set out in section 3 of this Framework). Non-
attendance will be regarded as a breach of safety policy and the officers of the
organisation/s will be expected to account for this.
The organisation will hold a similar Duty of Care meeting with all of its members at
which relevant information regarding safety of their particular activity will also be
2.5 Travel and Minibus Driving
The Union will provide the opportunity for its members to take the minibus drivers
assessment arranged through the University Safety Office. The Union will ensure
that its organisations are aware that only drivers who have passed the University
Driver Assessment can drive for them. This is in accordance with the University
Policy for the Safe Use of Minibuses.
The Union will hold one meeting each term to inform organisation officers and
potential minibus drivers of the current legislation and where the Athletic Union is
concerned, the procedures for hiring the Union leased buses.
A booklet containing this information will be produced and issued to Athletic Union
clubs whilst a copy of the University Policy will be issued to any organisation driving
buses wherever they are hired from.
The Constituent Organisation
The organisation will ensure that its officers and committee members as well as
prospective drivers attend the meetings as arranged. The organisations will ensure
that only drivers that have passed the University Driver Assessment are permitted to
drive any minibus used by the organisation.
Information regarding minibuses and driving should be communicated with other
members of the organisation.
Where Students Union leased vehicles are being used it is important that the
procedures are adhered to
2.6 Registration of Trips and Events Off-Campus
The Union will establish standard administrative systems for the comprehensive
registration of trips and off-campus events involving travel. These will include the
submission of passenger lists, planned activities, participants and itineraries,
location, contact numbers, assessed levels of risk involved, named drivers, coach
companies, length of stay and sensitive/medical information where necessary.
Trips will fall into the following categories:
i) Regular - those where it is the mainstay of the activity. These will include
outdoor pursuits, sports fixtures, JCR socials and anything that occurs on a
regular basis within the remit of the organisation. Regular might be defined as
every week, every month or every term.
ii) Occasional - those where the organisation plans special one-off events or
events where the event takes place only once every year. This may take the
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form of tours (as in Athletic Union clubs) or a specialised skiing trip to Europe.
Another example might include the Paris Hitch for RAG.
The Union will provide a trip registration form that can be accessed through
Netscape and will appear on the Union Website.
The Union will hold information regarding the trips at whatever level of frequency the
trip is defined.
The Union will work with the Security Office in handling the information relating to
The Constituent Organisation
The Organisation will register the trip through the form provided via accessing the
Union WebPages. http://www.lancs.ac.uk/lusu/au-socs/form.htm
A comprehensive and up-to-date list of trip participants will be submitted to the
Security Office upon departure. Information deposited there MUST be correct.
Amendments must be phoned through if necessary.
Officers of the organisation will take responsibility for informing its members of the
details of trips such as travel arrangements, equipment if needed and other relevant
Officers of organisations should be aware of any special needs of their participants
and take appropriate action in each instance.
2.7 Accident Reporting
The Union will monitor all accidents and incidents occurring within its constituent
Accident Reports will be held in the Student Activities Office. Completed forms will
be held within the Students Union and copied and distributed to the University Safety
Office and other University departments where necessary.
A standard procedure will be developed for the immediate notification and tactful
handling of serious or major incidents.
The Constituent Organisation
Officers will complete accident report forms relating to any accident or incident that
causes or could have caused injury. For example, an electric shock sustained during
participation and as a result of faulty equipment should be reported on the accident
The Union will keep up-to-date lists of inventories of its constituent organisations. It
will advise organisations on recommended frequency and type of testing for its
equipment and will liase with the University Safety Office where necessary.
Results of equipment testing will also be held within the Union.
The Union will assist its organisations with costs involved in regular equipment
testing in order to ensure that standards are maintained.
The Constituent Organisation
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Officers will be aware of their responsibilities to ensure that safety equipment is
regularly and properly maintained and will arrange at the required times for
equipment to be serviced.
The organisation will keep copies of its inventories of safety equipment and issue
similar copies to be kept in the Union. Changes to inventories must be updated and
copies submitted to the Union.
Arrangements must be made for equipment which has been classified as worn or
damaged to be repaired or replaced. Until such a time as this can be arranged the
said equipment will be marked as unserviceable and withdrawn from use until this
work has been done.
The organisation should make its members aware of the system employed to identify
the condition of its equipment at a safety meeting at the start of every year.
A logbook will be kept by the organisation and will be presented at a meeting
between the safety officer of the organisation and the Student Activities Officer in the
2.9 First Aid
The Union will arrange first aid courses to be run throughout the first term to ensure
that its organisations have qualified personnel. A register of qualified first aiders will
be kept in the Student Activities Office.
The Constituent Organisation
It is important that organisations have qualified first aid presence where there is a
risk of injury occurring in a given activity at any time.
Organisations should ensure that they organise for suitable members to receive first
aid training when it is offered.
2.10 Insurance Cover
The Union will arrange personal accident insurance cover through a general
insurance policy arranged with a local insurance broker. The Union holds full public
liability insurance cover for all of the activities of its constituent organisations.
The University has full public liability insurance cover for all its facilities that it
manages and maintains.
The Union will continue to seek value for money through its insurers and update and
extend its cover where the needs of its organisations demand.
The Constituent Organisation
The organisation will ensure that members are registered with the Union through
affiliation in order to benefit from the insurance cover provided.
Where insurance is necessary through affiliation to a national governing body the
organisation will ensure that this is met.
The organisation should advise its members that the personal accident cover
provided by the union is basic and should members perceive the risks attached to
their particular activity to be high they should consider taking out additional cover at
their own expense.
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2.11 High Risk Activities
The following activities have been classified as high risk.
American Football Hiking Sailing
Archery Inter College Sport Ski
Backpacking Martial Arts Snowboarding
Canoe Motoring Club Sub Aqua
Caving Mountaineering Windsurfing
All of the above organisations have completed risk assessments and produced
safety codes of practice.
The Union will continue to monitor and update this list.
3. Infringement of Framework Procedures
3.1 Disciplinary Procedure
The Safety Framework is the basis upon which Duty of Care is discharged by LUSU
to its constituent organisations. All inclusions are deemed to be essential and
important. It is because of this that any disregard for its contents may cause LUSU
to be in breach of its Duty of Care, particularly where attendance at the annual Duty
of Care briefing meeting is concerned.
Equally, organisations in breach of the framework may be putting the lives of their
members at risk. This is considered to be serious.
Where an infringement has occurred the following procedures will be followed
by the Union's Trustees (who are responsible collectively for Duty of Care).
N.B. This disciplinary procedure is specific to the Safety Framework and should not
be confused with the disciplinary procedure for LUSU as outlined in the LUSU
3.1.1 The organisation/activity in breach of the framework will be notified of the
exact nature of its infringement in writing.
3.1.2 The organisation will have 7 days to respond to the points raised under 3.1.1
and present and submit a written explanation
3.1.3 The infringement and the information submitted will be discussed in a meeting
of a panel of one of LUSU's student trustees, the Student Activities Officer
and another LUSU officer with relevant experience of the organisation
involved in the issue appointed by the trustee. If satisfied with the written
explanation no further action may be taken, in which case the organisation will
be informed in writing immediately after the meeting.
The Student Activities Officer will record the proceedings of the panel.
3.1.4 The organisation will have the opportunity to put its case and answer
questions from the panel, which will normally meet within 7 days of receiving
the written explanation where the written explanation is unsatisfactory.
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3.1.5 The panel may impose an appropriate penalty and/or other course of action.
These may include but not be limited to the following:
i) Suspension from LUSU of the organisation for up to the remainder of
the academic year
ii) Financial penalties
iii) Monitoring of the activities of the organisation concerned
iv) Freezing of financial assets
v) Suspension of the organisation until specified conditions have been
The organisation will be informed at the time of the panel’s decision and
subsequently in writing.
3.1.6 The organisation has the right of appeal, which must be submitted within one
week of the panel's decision.
3.1.7 If an appeal is lodged, a second panel will meet to review the appeal. This
panel will consist of another student trustee of LUSU and the Union General
Manager (or nominee).
3.1.8 The organisation will have the opportunity to put its case and answer
questions from the panel, which will normally meet within 7 days of receiving
notice of appeal.
3.1.9 After the appeal decision has been made the organisation will be informed in
3.1.10 The Appeal decision is final and any further complaint may only be made
regarding the procedures not being correctly followed. Such a complaint shall
be passed to the Pro-Vice Chancellor for Student and College Affairs.
4. Individual Organisations within LUSU
The following constituent organisations of LUSU are considered in respect of their
own individual safety requirement. Some of the constituent organisations safety
practices are operated in accordance with University Safety Policy and relevant
legislation that governs aspects of their operations. Sugar House, Shops and Offices
fall into this category.
4.1 Athletic Union
4.1.1 Swim Tests
All water-based sports will register their members for a 100m swimming
and tread water test before they will be eligible to participate in the
The Sports Centre will inform the Student Activities Officer of the
results of these tests and a register of those who have passed will be
kept in the Students Union and a copy in the Sports Centre.
Clubs such as Boat, Canoe, Sailing and Windsurfing will require
members to undertake a cold water swim test also. This will be
arranged via the Sports Centre.
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4.1.2 Health Related performance
Any instructor/coach operating on behalf of an Athletic Union club (or
Society of Societies Council) may refuse instruction or tuition to any
potential participant on health grounds until such a time as a doctor's
note or other evidence of suitability can be provided.
Where the activity requires specific professional tuition and/or where
members pay regular fees for tuition the instructor/teacher must hold a
recognised industry qualification and submit the appropriate
documentation as proof. This documentation (copies will suffice) will
be held within the Student Activities Office.
Instructors and teachers being paid on a session rate by members
must hold their own public liability insurance. The organisation and the
Student Activities Office must hold a copy of their insurance certificate.
This must be updated accordingly to take account of extra
qualifications gained by the instructor and any change in instructor.
This particularly relates to Dance organisations and performing arts and
Failure to comply with this may be considered to be a breach of the
The following areas have been identified for inclusion into the Framework and
are in the process of being developed.
4.3 Junior Common Rooms
4.3.2 Off Campus Socials
4.3.3 On Campus Socials
4.4.1 Fundraising Events
4.4.2 Paris Hitch
4.4.3 Fire Walking
4.5.3 Professional Liability
4.6 Bailrigg FM
4.6.1 Outside Broadcasting
4.7 Film Society
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4.8 Other Union Events On Campus
4.8.1 Graduation Ball
4.8.2 Freshers Fair
4.9 Sugar House
4.12 Student Employment Training
Sections 4.9 to 4.12 are included in this framework but not detailed. Such details
exist within other documents and are also bound by the law and University Policy,
which are adhered to.
LUSU will continue to monitor, evaluate and update its safety framework to ensure
that its members are informed and able to work within reasonably practicable
parameters of best practice.
5.1 Summary of Responsibility
As the parent body for its constituent organisations, the Students Union is
responsible for implementing the agreed framework.
The Students Union may restrict/curtail a club’s activities in line with section 3.1 of
this framework. In cases where action or inaction endangers the health and safety of
any other person, disciplinary action under University rules will be considered (rule
Negligence is defined in Law and applies if officers or staff, organisation committees
or individual members undertake to fulfil an aspect of the Duty of care and
subsequently fails to carry this out.
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5.2 Safety Tree
A chart of the lines of responsibility for safety in LUSU has been produced.
The Vice Chancellor
Director of The University Pro Vice
Resources Secretary Chancellor
Sports Centre Director of University Safety Students Union General
Director Estates Officer Manager
Students Union Trustees
Student Activities Constituent Organisations
Officers of Organisations
Sports & Societies Assistant
Committee of Organisation
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