Familiarise yourself with the rest of the policy pack before using this form in conjunction with the Risk Assessment Form. Tick the items as you check each hazard as part of the risk assessment.

new additions 2020
notes/action points
rats in compost bins or heaps
risk of Weill's disease, seek medical advice if flu-like symptoms, may be fatal. Always wear gloves to handle compost. Risk is reduced to insignificant once compost dug in/spread.
Avoid putting anything to encourage rats in compost. Remain vigilant to prevent/remove rats at all times, report to stewards immediately if rats seen. Take urgent action to dig out/remove all compost once any rat seen and remove their hiding places by clearing and tidying.

new additions added 2015
notes/action points
spores of Aspergillus (FUNGUS) from compost and shreddings
Causes lung infections. Avoid breathing spores, wear appropriate face masks. see http://www.aspergillus.org.uk for more advice or

new hazards - added 2014
notes/ action points
bee keeping (honey bees)
bee keepers must be members of BBKA and show membership card to steward. Sign on plot boundary with phone number to call if swarms. Inform neighbouring plot members before inspecting hives.
outdoor toys (eg swings, slides, climbing frames) for children
possible falls from height. Only use when under adult supervision.
propane or butane gas containers (eg Calor gas)
never leave unattended on allotments. Take home.


Found on buildings, fencing, and hidden on derelict plots. Contact local authority for disposal advice (regulations apply): do not touch.


Overhanging trees/obstacles from outside site.

May have shared responsibility with other landowner.

Committee emergency contact details

Check posted on notice board.

Communal paths/roadways

May be uneven, slippery when wet/icy weather steep gradient.

Are pedestrians at risk from vehicles colliding/speeding/turning?

Check for fuel leaks and potholes. Speed limit of 5 mph.

Fuel storage

Insist members store own supply of fuel, e.g. paraffin, bottled gas or coal, in non-flammable container away from structures. Members should not leave petrol for rotavators in sheds, but take it home in suitable containers. See propane gas policy above.


Check for loose hinges, awkward locks, unsafe structure, and ease of use.


Gaps create access for intruders. Overgrown/thorns. Hedges contain nesting birds that restrict when brush cutting can take place).

Perimeter fencing

All metal fencing requires an annual inspection to ensure that it is safe and in good condition. Barbed wire not recommended and is not permitted next to public thoroughfare - razor wire never permitted.

Anti-vandal paint must have signage. Gaps create access for intruders.


No concealing vegetation on pond surface or at sides.


No rubbish causing risk to wildlife or people.


Legible. No sharp edges or nails exposed. Emergency contact details clearly displayed and safety information provided where useful.


Ensure non-return valve fitted. Tanks at safe height or covered.


Check for Tree Preservation Orders (local authority).

Use a qualified tree surgeon to carry out risk assessments.

Pesticides and fertilisers

 Always follow instructions on labels. Never decant to unlabelled containers.


Vermin -see rats in compost above for more

Check for evidence of vermin, e.g. burrows/droppings/sightings. report to stewards, take urgent effective measures to trap/kill all vermin, remove items they can nest in, hide or live under


Water supply


Cover drains and meter stop taps. Ensure water turned off for winter, so lower risk of leaks and ice- slip.

Water storage

No sunken containers or stagnant water. Secure covers.



Specific rules. Ensure members are aware of local bylaws and association rules re:-timing /materials/location/extinguishing/nuisance.

Compost bins/manure storage

Should not contain any hazardous materials.

Check for any evidence of vermin, e.g. burrows/droppings/sightings.

Fencing between plots

See Perimeter Fencing above. Barbed wire is not permitted.

Discourage sharp-edged metal. Check heights and condition.


Check for broken glass at ground level in greenhouses or cold frames and trip hazards leading into glass structures.

Trip hazards

Could include hidden glass/rusty metal objects, potholes/unfilled holes or uncoiled hosepipes.

Structures (sheds/greenhouses/polytunnels)

Check all foundations, roof, doors, windows, walls, floor are safe. Chemicals and fuel should be safely stored.

Should not contain broken glass or other hazards.

Lone working

Members to inform family members or friends of whereabouts, carry a mobile phone. Dial 112 for emergency services from a mobile (better than 999). Consider risk from malicious intruders.



All vehicles should be roadworthy. Speed limit of 5 mph on all ridings. Drivers must be insured.

Power tools

Ensure in good working order. All guards to be fitted. Those operating tools to have relevant awareness training and protective clothing, eg eye protection for strimmers.


Consider fire risks, food poisoning risks. Ensure structures are stable and limit access to the hot area to responsible adults. Avoid alcohol if in charge of a barbeque.

Ladders etc e.g. used to access a hut roof

Ensure ladder complies with current legislation. Avoid lone working at heights. Ensure ladder is well secured and will not slip or rock.

Bamboo canes and sticks

May cause eye injury when bending. Cover the ends of canes with a plastic ball or bottle.


Members to ensure they are vaccinated.

Infections from thorns or food poisoning

Advise members to wear suitable gloves and seek medical attention if infected. Wash vegetables before eating.

Bites, stings, allergies

Members to take suitable precautions and seek medical attention if needed. If a member is aware of a severe allergy, inform field steward and consider how to direct an ambulance to the plot. (no postcode, so ambulance will need clear directions). Dial 112 from a mobile for emergency services.

Dogs and dog faeces

Dogs to be kept on a lead. Dog owners to remove dog faeces in suitable bags and dispose in landfill bin.