Date: June 01, 2016
Author: Christian Puccini

Risky Business

Every club, big or small, encounters hazards in the running of a golf club. It is ultimately the responsibility of the committee to ensure that a risk assessment has been conducted to determine hazards that need to be dealt with to minimize their severity and occurrence. These hazards may, if left unchecked, cause injury to players, guests, staff or volunteers and damage to property of the club or others.

Hi, Steve McInerney from MGA Insurance Brokers here and I’ll be bringing you some thought starters for your club in future newsletters  and hopefully prompt conversations within your committee’s.

Today I want to briefly talk about the use and storage of pesticides and chemicals. The main chemicals found on golf courses are fertilizers and pesticides, with pesticides having the greatest potential for harm. The following should be considered;

1.      Does your club, as part of its general Occupational Health & Safety compliance, have a documented record of training in the safe use of the chemicals used, and is it up to date?

2.      A  basic requirement of the Hazardous Substance Regulation is to develop and update a hazardous substance register of all chemicals used in the golf club and the use of Material Safety Data Sheets > Further info here

3     Are chemicals stored in compliance with current regulations?

4     Are all chemical containers labeled correctly, so as to easily identify?

5     Is protective equipment, such as disposable overalls, boots, gloves, goggles and respirator,       provided and used when handling chemicals.  The main exposure risks are from absorption through the skin and inhalation, therefore it is important to protect staff and volunteers with protective clothing

6     Does your club have a certified first aid person on site and is there a fully compliant first aid kit easily accessible?

.      7      Are first aid facilities available for washing off and to water to flush out eyes?

       8      Is there a documented safe working procedure for handling chemical spillages?

As you can see  there is more to consider, from a compliance perspective, than initially meets the eye. If an incident occurs and the club is found not to be compliant, there is the potential for your club to be in breach of Workplace Health and Safety regulations. With the possibility for fines and penalties to be imposed against the club and/or those running the club.

If you are needing advice on how insurance cover can dovetail into your risk management plan, contact your local MGA Insurance Broker. Find us on the web at