Health & Safety

The Management Committee is committed to protecting the health and safety of club visitors (including club members, parents, coaches, non-members, and contractors).  The Management Committee therefore asks that all visitors familiarise themselves and follow these health and safety policies. They include:

  • General visitor responsibilities
  • Court safety
  • Clubhouse health and safety
  • Welbeing
  • Care of children and young people
  • Smoking
  • Security
  • Complaints
  • Emergency procedures
  • Management Committee responsibilities
  • Contractor responsibilities

General Visitor Responsibilities

Every club visitor should:

Take responsibility for their own health and safety while at the club.

Ensure that no action or inaction while at the club causes harm to any other person.

Challenge unsafe acts and behaviours of others if observed.

Be open to being challenged if another person believes your acts or behaviours are unsafe.

Assist anyone who is injured at the club. If the injury is minor, contact a first aider and attend to the injured person. A first aid kit is available in the club rooms. If the injury is serious, dial the emergency services. Ensure your own safety and the safety of others before rushing in to help.

Report any hazards and injuries to the Club Health & Safety Officer, including near misses. Also minimise visitor exposure (such as placing warnings or other controls) if the hazard is an imminent risk to the health and safety of others.

Court Safety

For all court users, including parents and caregivers of children and young people who use the  courts.

If wet, do not use the Courts 1 & 2. They are slippery when wet.

Return court sweepers to their rack. Leaving them around the courts risks injury to others.

Remove balls from court surface before playing and warn other players if balls come into their playing area. Stepping on balls can cause serious injury.

Wait for points to be completed before walking behind players on a court. The players will not expect you there and may run into you if chasing a ball.

Place items safely. Place bags or drink bottles on either side of the net post where players won't run into them.

Remove debris from courts surface such as stones and leaves. There is a leaf blower in the clubrooms to blow off leaves.

Place no furniture (or heavy or sharp objects) on any court surface. These risk permanent damage to the court surface or its substrate, putting players at risk of tripping or slipping.

Use only tennis shoes with good tread. This will help to prevent slips. Rubberised non-marking soles also prevent marking of the court surfaces.

Consume only water. Take no food, coffee, tea, or other beverage other than water onto the courts as, if spilt, these may result in an oily spot that puts players at risk of slipping. It also risks permanent staining of the courts or accelerated growth of mould, mildew, or fungus.

Protect against big servers.  Stand well behind the baseline for powerful servers. This not only reduces the risk of being hit by the ball but increases substantially your chances of returning the ball.

Care for elderly players.  When playing elderly players (or children or novice players), avoid powerful serves and shots as these not only risk causing injury (by straining wrists/arms if the ball is not hit correctly, causing brusing if the balls strikes the receiver, or knocking the receiver over) but will reduce their enjoyment of the game. Practice ball placement and spin shots instead.

Do not enter neighbour’s properties to retrieve balls. Their property is private and intruders are not welcome.

Clubhouse Health and Safety

For clubhouse users, including parents and caregivers of children and young people who use the clubrooms.

Eliminate trip hazards such as tennis balls, ping pong balls, table tennis bats. Place all tennis balls in the ball containers and table tennis equipment on the TV shelf.

Ensure egress paths are clear of obstructions. Remove any bags, furniture, children's toys, racquets, balls.

Clean up spills and spatter immediately. There are cleaning products under the kitchen bench and a mop and bucket in the hot water cupboard.

Maintain a clean and tidy environment. Wash, dry and put away all cups, glasses, and utensils after use. Wipe down benches and table surfaces. Clean up any dirt brought into the clubrooms.

Maintain a hygienic environment.  Do not leave personal items (clothes, towels, drink bottles, shoes, socks, wallets, tissues, hankerchiefs) in the clubrooms. Place these in your bag and take them with you.

Practise good hand hygiene. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water and dry them well.

Practise good sneeze/cough hygiene.  Cover coughs and sneezes with clean tissues or your elbow and dispose of tissues.

Prevent flies and stench. Place all food waste (fruit, banana skins, orange peels, take-away meals, vegetables, meat, bread, sausages, and any other organic matter) in the compost bin outside the kitchen window. Secure the compost lid afterwards to prevent vermin.

Wrap sanitary items in plastic before placing in rubbish bins.

Reduce fire risk . Ensure stove is switched off before leaving and if not in use. Leave nothing on the stove and its heating elements (electric cord, food, utensils, or food wrapping).

Keep clear of contractors and other workers.


For the enjoyment of all participants and to maintain and enhance its standing in the community, Kilbirnie Tennis Club promotes fair play and respect for others.


Pay attention to the safety of other people and do not do anything that might endanger or distress others.

Recognise others' needs to enjoy involvement in tennis and have a quality experience.

Be courteous to others at the Club at all times and treat everyone fairly and with respect. When playing at another venue as a representative of Kilbirnie Tennis Club, be courteous to and respectful of opposing players and fellow club members alike.

Communicate with others in a way that is honest and considerate.

Follow the principles of fair play and encourage others to do the same. Make fair line calls. If any doubt, the ball must be called in.

Be gracious in both success and defeat.

Stop bullying and harassment behaviour from any visitor to the Club such as constant blaming for mistakes, shouting or yelling where it is not necessary to be heard, constant crticism, swearing, insults, and sarcasm. See more examples here

Dress appropriately for tennis. 

Act in ways that uphold the Club's reputation and that do not bring the club into disrepute.

Use club resources for authorised purposes and account correctly and accurately for all transactions.

Care of Children and Young People

Kilbirnie Tennis Club aims to create an environment in which children and young people feel safe. The following policies are intended to help protect children and young people while they are at the club.


Duty of care. As the Club does not have staff on site, the Club is not able to provide care for children and young people. The duty of care for children thus remains with their parents or guardians. Club officers and other volunteers are not responsible for children at any time.

Assign responsibility. If you intend to leave children at the club, ensure that appropriate care is assigned to either a coach or another responsible adult and that this person has the capacity to provide that care (coaches are usually only able to care for the children to whom they are giving lessons).

Collection. Do not leave children waiting to be collected alone. If it is necessary for children to wait to be collected, arrange for another adult to accompany the child.

Protect all children. If in attendance with your children at the club, ensure that all children present are safe. Child safety is the responsibility of everyone.


Respect. Treat children and young people with respect.

Empathy. Have empathy with children and young people.

Encourage. Encourage enjoyable participation for children and young people in tennis.

Visibility. Always work within the view and hearing distance of others when working with children. Avoid working with children in the clubrooms without another adult present.

Adult/child boundaries. Keep your private life and personal conversations separate and out of earshot or sight of children and young people.

Drugs/alcohol. Never work with children or young people under the influence of drugs or alcohol or in possession of either.

Photos. Seek permission from parents before taking photos. Parents/guardians to advise if they do not want prize-giving, news, or promotional photos taken.


The entire club facility is a non-smoking area, including clubhouse, courts, and ashphalt areas. Smoking includes cigarette smoking, vaping, cigar smoking, and pipe smoking. Smokers can smoke on the Crawford Road footpath - there is a public bin near the bus shelter for cigarette butts.


Personal items. Store no cash, alcohol, or personal valuables at the club.

Lock-up. Close and secure all doors, windows, and gates before leaving.

Hand-over. If you opened the clubrooms or courts but other club members remain when you leave, ensure that you hand off responsibility for lock-up to another reliable club member.


First try to resolve any issues directly with the person with whom you have concerns. Concerns may include: poor practice, concerning behaviours, bullying, and harassment. If you are not satisfied with the response, e-mail any concerns or complaints without delay to the Club Health & Safety Officer.

The Management Committee will normally only consider complaints if they are in writing. The Management Committee will decide whether to take action on the complaint.

Emergency Procedures


  1. Phone the Fire Service (Ph 111)
  2. Extinguish the fire using the extinguisher just inside the main clubhouse door if there is no personal danger to you or anyone else
  3. Leave the clubhouse and courts by the nearest exit:
    - DO NOT return to the clubhouse
    - Walk, Don't run
    - DO NOT carry anything that can drop and cause a trip hazard
    - Keep clear of emergency workers
  4. Proceed to and assemble on the Crawford Road footpath outside the clubrooms.


  • Keep calm
  • Move away from windows, equipment, and shelves that may fall
  • Take cover under solid furniture such as conference table
  • Be prepared for aftershocks

When the shaking stops:

  • Keep calm and help those in need of assistance
  • Turn off all electrical sources
  • Check for hazards and extinguish any fires if safe to do so
  • Listen to the radio for civil defence instructions

If you need to evacuate:

  • Leave the clubhouse and courts by the nearest exit using exit procedures (3) under FIRE above
  • Keep together
  • Proceed to and assemble on the Crawford Road footpath outside the clubrooms.


  • Phone the facilities manager - see contacts
  • Shut off the power and water and turn off electrical applicances if there is no personal danger to you or anyone else.
  • Prepare to evacuate.


If a person if displaying unusual behavior:

  • Keep calm, make no sudden movements
  • Do what the offender asks
  • Try to memorise as many details about the offender as possible
  • Notify police (ph 111) as soon as it is safe to do so. Leave the phone line open until Police arrive.

Management Committee Responsibilities

Review. Regularly monitor and review the club health and safety performance and systems.

Investigate all hazards, injuries, and near misses reported to the Health & Safety Officer.

Familarisation. Help ensure visitors become familiar with and follow the Club's heath & safety policies. This may include regular reminders.

Modelling. Lead by modelling exemplar behaviours, taking collectively responsibility for the day-to-day implementation of our health and safety framework.

Police vetting. We will Police vet at regular intervals coaches and volunteers who have responsiility for the care of children or young people.

Reviews. We will review at regular intervals the Health and Safety policies and procedures of our contracted coaching company against Sport NZ codes of conduct.

Communication. We will only communicate with parents/caregivers in club communications.

In addition, for all members in positions of responsibility:

Be aware of the potential for conflicts of interest and always act fairly, impartially and transparently. Don’t let personal interests or personal relationships affect decisions.

Act within delegated powers and only make decisions for which delegated authority has been given.

Obey the law and not engage in corrupt practices.

Look after club information as an asset that belongs to all club members. Store information securely so it can be easily found and used by others, now and in the future.

Create and manage accurate, complete and accessible records of decisions and actions and store them securely.

Treat information with care and only use it for proper purposes.

Contractor Responsibilities

When providing services to Kilbirnie Tennis Club, contractors shall follow all applicable health and safety policies above and any others advised by the Club Health and Safety Officer.

Contractors shall also comply with the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 as a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU), as a worker of that PCBU, and/or as an officer of that PCBU. This includes, without limitation:

Consider risks. Ensure that the health and safety of other persons is not put at risk from work carried out as part of the provision of the services.

Safe systems. Develop and maintain safe systems of work.

Equipment and substances. Ensure their safe use, handling, and storage.

Keep up-to-date. Acquire, and keep up to date, knowledge of work health and safety matters including WorkSafe Codes of Practice and Health & Safety at Work (General Risk and Workplace Management) Regulations 2016.

Understand tennis risks. Gain an understanding of the nature of the operations at the  Club and of the hazards and risks associated with these.

Improve processeses. Establish processes to eliminate or minimise risks to health and safety from work carried out as part of the provision of the services.

Consult and co-ordinate activities with the Club Health & Safety Officer on health and safety risks which the Club is best placed to manage.


The author expresses appreciation to Sport NZ for their policy and procedure guides, SiteSafe for their health and safety guides, NZ Transport Agency for their staff health and safety guide, and the NZ Health & Safety at Work Act 2015 for comprehensive information in the preparation of these policies and procedures.

Copyright © 2021 by Peter McArthur on original material.