Safety - Walking

LALG Guidance for Walking Groups

There are a number of LALG walking groups, completing many different types of walks so this guidance may need adapting to suit particular walks / situations.  

Walkers

  • It is the responsibility of all walkers to prepare themselves for the walk that they are undertaking - including personal fitness, equipment, clothing and suitable refreshments.
  • If the walker is unsure of his / her capabilities to complete the walk, or has any other concerns, it is their responsibility to contact the walk leader prior to the day of the walk.
  • ll walkers are expected to stay as a group and be considerate to others within and outside the group.

Walk Leaders

It is the responsibility of walk leaders to:

Before the walk:

  • Plan the route to suit the particular walking group and to investigate the length, timing, terrain and possible obstacles.
  • Provide the ‘Group Contact’ with details of the walk for publication in the newsletter.
  • Whether or not you recce the route beforehand (recommended), take account of critical navigation points, hazards and possible problems. Timings, rest and toilet stops and access restrictions should be checked, adjusting the route if necessary.
  • The day before the walk check the weather forecast, and if required review the route and be prepared to cancel if necessary.

At the start of the walk:

  • Introduce each other and appoint a back marker if possible.
  • Outline the route, estimated distance, finishing time and points of interest.
  • Count the group and signal the start of the walk.

During the walk:                                                                                                       

  • Warn walkers on approaching a road, keep all of the group together - especially at stiles, on inclines and any other difficult parts of the walk.
  • Check on the back marker, if appointed, and the number in the group as appropriate.
  • On any hill walks there should be a minimum of 4 walkers.

At the end of the walk:

  • Conduct a debrief on how well the walk went, identifying any incidents and near misses if this hasn’t been done during the walk.
  • Report all incidents to the LALG Secretary (secretary@lalg.org.uk) as soon as possible using the Incident Report form.

Further information

  • In order to be covered by LALG insurance walks should be recognised as official LALG events - they should be advertised in the monthly LALG newsletter, organised by or with the agreement of the group contact and participants should all be current members.
  • Any non LALG members participating on the walk should be encouraged to join.

Further reference / guidance:

www.ramblers.org.uk > safety

www.ramblers.org.uk > Countryside Code for the public

Steve Green   August 2018

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