The below is only an example checklist for a chapter to utilize when canvassing general activity spaces. It is generally a Chapter/Chorus Manager’s responsibility to ensure that these safety checks occur on an “as necessary” basis.
The Society and its chapters have both a moral and a legal responsibility to provide a safe facility for the general public, members, and non-members. Injuries, of course, distract from and interfere with the enjoyment of our music. Each chapter can help ensure safe facilities through self-inspection. Many self-inspection items are common sense. However, someone must exercise that common sense.
It is a common belief that the management or owner of a facility is responsible for safety at that particular facility. However, this is not usually true in a legal sense. The chapter or the Society is usually the ‘responsible party’ because most leases or rental agreements contain a clause shifting the liability to the renter, in this case, the chapter and the Society.
Example items to be considered:
- Seating is sturdy and no seats or chairs are broken
- Adhesive strips are used to prevent slips on stairs
- Sufficient exits with lighted signs and properly operating doors. Including panic hardware
- Stairs are well-lit and handrails are secure and are in good condition
- Parking lots are well-lit and have no hazards (holes, etc.)
- Walking surfaces that are slippery (due to weather) is safe by the use of mats, mops, signs, etc.
- Spills of any kind are not present
- All cords are taped down to eliminate tripping hazards
- Walkways to and from a stage are well-lit.
- Loose carpeting and Curled carpeting are anchored and taped down.
- No stairs, scaffolding or catwalks have items ‘stored’ on them.
- Large sections of stationary glass are marked to prevent persons from walking into/through them
- The Front of stage is well delineated by methods similar to marking that edge with tape
- There is a functioning emergency evacuation plan that is ‘public knowledge’
- Snow and ice are removed from exterior walking surfaces, with salt or sand applied.
- Fire alarms and sprinklers are serviced and tested
- Fire extinguishers have been tested within the last year
- Emergency auxiliary lighting is operating and has been tested
Most of these items can be covered by visual observation or by speaking to the management of the facility. Unsafe conditions should be remedied before hosting an activity in the area.