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Stocksfield Parish Council Risk Assessment: Volunteer litter collection and gardening

Subject Risk(s) Identified Risk Level Management or Control of Risk Review/Assess/Revise
Animals and insects Bites or scratches L Wear appropriate clothing and gloves. Beware of dogs or livestock and avoid contact
Seek medical help if bitten or stung
Heavy objects Strains


Do not lift or move heavy objects  
Chemicals Burns or poisoning L Do not approach or move containers which may contain or have contained chemicals. If exposed, record details and location of container and seek medical attention. Contact appropriate agency to deal with the container (Environment Agency (EA) or Northumberland County Council (NCC))  
Steep slope and ground in poor condition Slips and Falls L Wear suitable footwear.
Assess ground condition and avoid working on steep slopes or poor ground conditions. Choose safest route.
In event of injury, seek medical attention and instruct others to avoid the area.
Hedges, fences, walls and ditches

Slips and Falls

L Do not climb walls, ditches and fences. Take care when climbing stiles, particularly in wet or icy conditions  
Ponds, rivers, streams Drowning M Do not work in ponds, rivers or streams.
If working close to a water feature, never work alone and always work at least in pairs.
Highway Injury from passing vehicles M Do not work on the road.
Wear high visibility clothing if working close to a road or on a highway.
Be aware of passing traffic.
Do not obstruct the road.
Conflict with other people Aggression or injury L Do not work alone. Always remain in close proximity to other volunteers.
Withdraw from the area rather than face conflict.
Refuse and litter Injury from sharp items L Only collect general litter.
Always wear gloves and use a litter picker. Do not collect discarded syringes or other medical waste – contact NCC
Trees and Shrubs Injury from low or falling branches L Be aware of branches and roots.
Do not trim branches that cannot be reached from the ground without a ladder.
Garden maintenance and the collection of garden waste Cuts and stings L Wear protective gloves and clothing.
Use pointed and sharp tools with care.
Be aware of other people in close proximity

Note: The Council’s Volunteer Policy precludes the use of power tools by any volunteer when working as a volunteer under the direction, guidance or request of the Parish Council. The Volunteer Policy and associated risk assessments do not apply when volunteers undertake work on behalf of other agencies (eg NCC, Tyne Rivers Trust or the EA). Risks are categorised as High (H), Medium (M) or Low (L). Where any risk level is identified as being HIGH, the task should not be undertaken. Where a risk level is assessed as MEDIUM, identified actions must be taken to control the risk or the task must not be undertaken

Risk assessment undertaken by Clerk date 10/11/16