Health and Safety

Christchurch Marathon Clinic

Health and Safety Policy

The Christchurch Marathon Clinic strives to make all runs / walks as enjoyable and as safe as possible.  Runs / walks will be undertaken that both meet the club members needs for training, and ensure that the club protects the safety of its members. While the club can set in place rules and regulations, club members are reminded that each and every one has a personal responsibility to each other to run / walk safely and undertake safe outings. The following Hazard Identification and Safety Process Description outlines a number of health and safety issues that affect us all.  This list is not exhaustive, but is presented to highlight a health and safety culture that the club strives to install to protect the safety of all its members and visitors. It is the responsibility of every member to identify additional health and safety issues as they arise so that a risk assessment can be undertaken and safety guidelines put in place.

Club Policy

  • Runner / walker safety is paramount
  • Runs will be cancelled or postponed if it is considered that member safety is compromised
  • No runners / walkers will be left alone during a group run / walk
  • Runs / walks will be altered depending on the conditions developing during an outing
  • All runs / walks will be undertaken in the awareness of everyone’s abilities
  • Advertised routes are subject to variation

Hazard Identification and Safety Process

1. Personal Safety

The safety of all runners / walkers lies in the hands of every club member. At no time will a club member be placed in a situation that will compromise their personal safety.

Safety risks identified include

  • Remote solo runners
  • Female runners / walkers on their own (esp at night)
  • Injured runners
  • Road crossing – esp. when talking or following other runners without checking for traffic

Preventative Action

  • Designate “Tail End Charlie”  This person to run with last runners
  • Event leader does not leave until all members have reported back
  • All members to be aware of everyone’s personal safety
  • Female members do not run / walk alone at night on club events
  • Injured runners to be assisted back to club and/or to seek medical attention
  • Refocus & cross only when road is clear

2. Running in the dark

Running in the dark forms a serious safety issue for the club.  While the runner may in many circumstances be doing things correctly, the runner should be vigilant to other road users actions and be prepared to take evasive action at all times.

Safety risks identified include

  • Poor visibility of runner by driver
  • Running in dark clothing
  • Driver distraction by street lights / approaching traffic
  • Runners not facing oncoming traffic
  • Poor visibility due to road geometry
  • Use of personal headphones while running, especially if running alone

Preventative Action

  • Always wear reflective vest / clothing
  • Wear light coloured clothing
  • Run on footpath where possible
  • Run towards approaching traffic at all times where practical, especially on rural roads and unlit roads
  • Be prepared for evasive action at all times
  • Run on outside of curves to increase forward visibility
  • Lead pack runners should call “Approaching Car” to the remainder of the pack. All other runners should repeat the call to ensure that all runners are aware of the hazard.
  • Runners should not run with headphones; this reduces the ability of the runner to hear approaching traffic

3. Adverse Weather Conditions

Running / walking in summer or winter conditions can be invigorating, but also carries a high risk.  Adverse weather conditions can be experienced during any season.

Safety risks identified include


  • Heat exhaustion / heat stroke
  • Dehydration
  • Sunlight and glare (to members and drivers)


  • Cold / hypothermia
  • Wet conditions
  • Ice / snow
  • Loss of control of vehicles
  • Flooding

Remote environment

  • Lost runners
  • Alpine / remote areas
  • Poor communications ability (cell phone coverage)
  • Trip hazards / personal injury
  • Rapid change of weather

Preventative Action

  • Always wear reflective vest / clothing
  • Wear light clothing & hats during hot summer days
  • Wear warm clothing during cool / winter days
  • Carry additional clothing / jackets
  • Carry water / fluids in hot weather / long runs
  • Be aware of approaching traffic
  • Postpone / cancel runs if weather conditions are adverse
  • Advise someone of run / walk location / duration and expected completion time.  Advise that all are back safe at the end of the run / walk
  • Run / walk as a group.  Reassemble the group frequently, check all members are present before recommencing run
  • Carry a first aid pack on all remote outings
  • Run / walk is to be suspended if member is injured.  At least one other club member is to remain with the injured member.  Where possible, two members are to seek help if outside cell phone coverage

4. Group Running and Walking

The skill range of the club is vast and varied.  As a result the pace of every member will vary.  In many instances the run / walk will quickly establish into groups of similar ability.

When running / walking as a pack members are reminded of the following:

  • Runners / walkers are vulnerable road users
  • Group separation
  • Unfamiliarity of course by members
  • Change of course without advising all members

Preventative Action

  • Normal road rules apply at all times
  • Runners / walkers are to give way to traffic at all times
  • Runners / walkers are to cross the road only when it has been assessed that it is safe to do so
  • A member is not to be left to run on their own
  • The group is to re-establish at frequent intervals while on long duration runs / walks

Member Responsibility

If a runner or walker chooses to take a different route/short cut  or cannot keep up with the group or does not want the group to wait for them he/she must:

  • Inform the pack leader or the Tail End Charlie of their decision
  • Wait for the next group & join this group
  • Confirm their health / well being to Pack Leader / Tail End Charlie if leaving group
  • Agree on their route / meeting arrangements
  • Take personal responsibility for their actions

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