Health & Safety and Operations
Health and Safety legislation is adhered at all levels of management, from your senior event team through to event staff, contractors and sub-contractors. The implications of not considering your duty of care can be very serious, from major fines to imprisonment. For this reason, it is best practice to have a competent, named person who is responsible for safety at your event – and for larger events there may be a need for a dedicated safety officer. You will need to ensure that you have developed processes for managing health and safety, and that all documentation is available for the relevant authorities to review in the event of an incident.
Where members of the public are invited to participate in a staged and planned event, the responsibility, or duty of care, for public safety rests with the organiser and/or the owner of the property or land where such events are staged. This means that as the organiser, you have a duty of care for your audience.
A duty of care is a legal obligation requiring you to adhere to a reasonable standard of care while performing any acts that could foreseeably harm others. As an event organiser, you will always have a duty of care to people working at or visiting your event, and safety must always be the paramount consideration before, during and after your event, whatever the size.
Fermanagh and Omagh District Council has developed an EVENTS TOOLKIT (download below) which highlights the following sections: GETTING STARTED, PLANNING AN EVENT, HEALTH & SAFETY AND OPERATIONS, GRANT AID, SPONSORSHIP AND BUDGETS, MARKETING & PROMOTION, EVALUATIONS AND SURVEYS, CONTACTS.
Relevant guidance can also be found via HSE: http://www.hse.gov.uk/event-safety/event-organisers.htm and http://www.hse.gov.uk/event-safety/running.htm
Safety Advisory Group
Each local authority has a Safety Advisory Group (SAG) to provide advice on event safety matters and to ensure that public safety is maintained. SAG’s consider all event-licensing requests and offer advice and guidance to all parties concerned.
The group is made up of representatives from the following organisations:
Fermanagh and Omagh District Council Events, Licencing and Environmental Health Departments
- Department for Infrastructure (DfI) – Roads Service
- Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS)
- Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS)
- Police Service Northern Ireland (PSNI)
- Western Health and Social Care Trust (WHSCT)
SAG’s normally meet approximately quarterly throughout the year to consider proposed events within the district. Depending on the nature and scale of the event you are making an application for, you may be invited to one of the Safety Advisory Group meetings to discuss the specifics of your proposal in more detail based on a presentation. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: 0300 303 1777
Event Management Plan
All sizes of events may benefit from a more substantial document called an Event Management Plan to keep everybody on target, timetable activities, provide contacts, map services etc for the event. The Event Management Plan is a relatively straightforward process; Event Management Plan (large 1,000+ attendees) and a small/medium Event Management Plan (less than 1,000 attendees) can be downloaded below. HSE also have guidance on Safety Plans.
Events can have many associated risks. These can arise from an unusual site, large numbers of people, the moving of equipment, as well as weather conditions, crowd control and traffic management. All of the above, and many others, can create a variety of potential hazards. All events organisers have a responsibility to thoroughly assess risks to help reduce or remove potential dangers to staff and attendees and members of the public. Template Risk Assessment can be downloaded below. HSE have further details on Risk Assessments
Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS)
The planning and safe delivery of an event whether it is a large or small involves a great deal of work for the event organiser who has prime responsibility for protecting the health, safety & welfare of everyone working at, or attending, the event. If you have responsibility for organising a public event, NIAS would be grateful if you would click the link to complete and submit an Event Information Questionnaire.
Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS)
It is the responsibility of event organisers to ensure the venue has adequate provision in the event of fire. You should contact The Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service to discuss safety issues.
Police Service Northern Ireland (PSNI)
Visit PSNI website, click on ‘My Area’, select ‘your district’ and choose ‘your area’. You will then be provided with policing details for that area including telephone and email contacts. Make contact with the police in the first instance to inform them of your event and ask for advice.
You will also need to consider Emergency Services access in and out of your event. For further information click http://www.hse.gov.uk/event-safety/incidents-and-emergencies.htm
Temporary Road Closures
You may need to apply for a Temporary Road Closure in order for car to park on a roadside If you require a Temporary Road Closure for an event please allow a lead in time of 12 + week, prior to the event and contact the Building Control and Licensing Department on: 0300 303 1777. Remember that your application could be refused, and you may have to consider alternative locations so start your conversation with Licensing Department Team as soon as possible.
HSE: Guidance on Running Events Safely
The Purple Guide to Health, Safety and Welfare at Music and Other Events
HSE: Five Steps to Risk Assessment
HSE: Risk Assessment Template
CIEH National Guidance for Outdoor and Mobile Catering
LCCC Noise Guidance for Organisers of Events
CIEH/The Noise Council: Code of Practice on Environmental Noise Control at Concerts
DHSSPSNI Fire Safety Risk Assessment: Open Air Events and Venues
Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service
NIFRS Fire Risk Assessment Templates
Northern Ireland Ambulance Service
Department of Justice – Fireworks Licence