All cricket clubs within the UK have a duty of care to those who play, work or visit the sports club. This can include:
To ensure you are meeting the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, your cricket club must undertake a risk assessment. This secures provisions for health, safety and welfare, and you can find online templates for your risk assessment if unsure what it should include.
To check the activities and equipment, such as if the cricket surface is suitable, a risk assessment will take it into account. This assessment will reduce risk of incident at your venue. Your cricket club risk assessment should include:
If, during the risk assessment, you have identified issues that could deem the venue unsafe or cause incident - you must resolve this immediately. As part of the Health and the Safety Act 1974, you must eliminate all risks before players or visitors use the cricket club. If players arrive for a game, for example, and there are still risks - the match should be cancelled until further notice.
For more information, the National Governing Bodies (NGBs) manage and recognise over 100 sports, and outline how often your particular sport should implement a risk assessment procedure.
A well thought-out cricket club safety procedure takes care of all precautions and risk assessments. Even with all precautions, accidents can happen, which is why you should have emergency procedures in place.
A first aid provision is a basic medical requirement for all cricket clubs. If your cricket club has more than one team, we advise you have more than one qualified first aider, with UKCC level 2 qualifications. Cricket club managers, and general sports club managers, should ensure adequate first aid training is provided to chosen staff, while arranging first aid cover for team matches and visits.
All cricket clubs should have more than one first aid kit. The first aid kits must be well-stocked. If your team is travelling for an away game, you must also take a first aid kit off-site, with the team accompanied by a trained first aider.
Your sports first aid kit should include:
If an accident does occur (this can refer to anything that has led to injury, or an unsafe activity), it is essential that they are reported immediately. You should already have an accident and incident form in place to fill out, as part of the Health and Safety act.
As a cricket club, it’s more than likely away teams will visit for games. It’s your duty of care to ensure first aid provisions are in place for the away team and visitors to your venue. If an accident does occur, you will have a procedure to follow and be aware of. Any incident should also be reported.
The cricket surface is vital to the welfare of your team and should be maintained to ensure there aren’t any opportunities for incidents. Whether that be fine turf, non-turf or indoor practice facilities, you should have groundsmen in place to take care of the cricket surface. The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) provide guidelines for club management of the surface.
Without a health and safety plan in place, you are failing in your duty of care. You must act immediately to implement a procedure for an emergency action plan. Once you have done so, you should distribute it to the relevant persons. Medtree are sharing nine steps to creating and implementing your plan:
A first aid kit is a government requirement for all sports clubs, but you should also look into providing other medical equipment that can, in some cases, reduce the risk of loss of life.
Defibrillators are an essential piece of medical kit for health and safety in sports. In 2012, Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest during a football game. Since that day, there has been a staggering increase in defibrillators at sports clubs. More than 900 defibrillators are available for clubs within the UK, and there has even been a partnership between the Football Association (FA) and British Heart Foundation (BHF).
The importance of a defibrillator is huge. By using a defibrillator, you are doubling a person’s chance of life if they have suffered from a cardiac arrest. A person’s chance of surviving a sudden cardiac arrest (SAC) is 10% without a defib, but increases to 70% with the medical apparatus. A number of young people currently suffer from undiagnosed heart problems and the right plan, and equipment, can help save lives. Providing clubs with equipment to do so is a vital aspect of health and safety within sports. You can ensure your team is prepared for cases of cardiac arrest by renting a defibrillator, available at Defib Machines.
Sara Askew, Head of Survival at the British Heart Foundation: “When someone collapses with a cardiac arrest, every second is vital. Defibrillators are an important part of the chain of survival, along with calling the emergency services and starting CPR.
Performing CPR and using a defibrillator can help double a person’s chance of survival. That’s why we need this life saving equipment to be available and maintained so that it can be used in an emergency.”
Concussion may be more prevalent in contact sports, but awareness of the consequences of concussion, and how to treat head injuries, is vital. The Sport and Recreation Alliance (SRA) has developed concussion guidelines along with medical professionals to ensure rules are in place to protect players.
To identify concussion, you need to be aware of the following symptoms:
There has been recent improvement in the studies looking at concussion. FIFPro researched the possibility of a connection between concussion in former athletes, and the risk of mental health problems later in life. Their findings stated that players who suffered concussion four or five times in their career were 1.5 times more likely to report symptoms of common mental disorders. These statistics suggest the damage multiple concussions can cause in players. Therefore, it’s essential that all precautions are in place to protect players from suffering head injuries, and proper first aid training is provided to staff.