Spectator Safety Policy

General Health and Safety Policy, Statement of Intent.

Our statement of general policy is:

  • To provide adequate control of the health and safety risks arising from our work activities;
  • To consult with our employees on matters affecting their health and safety;
  • To provide and maintain a safe environment and equipment;
  • To ensure safe handling and use of substances;
  • To provide information, instruction and supervision for employees;
  • To ensure all employees are competent to do their tasks, and give them adequate training;
  • To prevent accidents and work-related cases of ill health;
  • To maintain safe and healthy working conditions
  • To review and revise this policy as necessary at regular intervals

Employers Responsibilities

Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and associated Regulations.

Employers are responsible for the health and safety and welfare whilst at work of all employees, under Section 2 of the Act. They are also responsible for all persons (including visitors, contractors and temporary employees) as well as members of the public who may be affected by the employers’ activities under Section 3 of the Act.

Employers are responsible for their staff on other premises owned by other employers.

Employers have an absolute legal obligation to:

    • Ensuring a safe working environment and ensuring that safe systems of work are in place
    • Identifying for hazards, unsafe acts and conditions
    • Ensuring relevant risk assessments are carried out, e.g. Manual Handling, COSHH etc
    • Ensuring all equipment is safe and checked by technical specialists
    • Ensuring all chemicals and hazardous substances are controlled and used, according to legal requirements
    • Ensuring the necessary safety training for all staff members, including issue of statutory information e.g. Health and Safety Policy
    • Ensuring written work instructions, warning notices and signs are provided where necessary
    • Ensuring that checks are made for the well being of anyone working alone
    • Ensuring that employees are not working excessive hours
    • Ensuring protective equipment is available and used where necessary
    • Including health and safety issues on the agenda of meetings at least quarterly
    • Reporting all accidents occurring in the work place and then investigating to determine cause and put in place any corrective action required

Safety Responsibilities

Overall responsibility

Neil Mackay, the Chairman of Dumbarton Football Club is responsible overall for health and safety matters

Implementation of health and safety

Day to day health and safety matters is the responsibility of the General Manager.

Operational Safety

Operational health and safety matters on a match day are the responsibility of the Matchday Safety Officer.

Health and Safety Advice

Competent advice on health and safety matters is provided by Club Safety Officer

Match day safety

The persons with responsibility for spectator safety on match days are the Matchday Safety Officer and Head Steward under the control of the Police Liaison Officer, if applicable.

Health and Safety Management System.

Identification of hazards and assessment of risk

The Safety Officer is responsible for identifying hazards and formally assessing the level of risk.

Risk assessments

Risk assessments identify the level of risk, current controls and additional controls required. Risk assessments are discussed and shared with the relevant staff and their input sought in measures required to reduce risk to a level that is as low as reasonably practicable.

Risk Register

Risk assessment details and level of risk are recorded on the club’s risk register which is circulated to the Board of Directors.

Action plan

Risks which require additional control measures are prioritised and detailed on the club’s action plan shared with the board.

Monitoring and review

The risk assessments, risk register and action plan are reviewed annually for the board, the SFA audit and the Council Licensing Officer.

Accident or incident investigation

Senior managers with responsibility for the relevant area are responsible for investigating any accidents or incidents, including incidents of work related ill health.

Spectator Safety Objectives


See match day chain of command above. Monitoring and inspection

In preparation for, and during each event the following preparations and inspections are made by the Match Safety Officers, documented and shared with the Match Commander (if in attendance).

    • Pre-event risk assessment (based on intelligence and past experience)
    • Pre-event checks and inspections more than more than 48 hours and 24 hours before an event
    • Pre-event checks on the day
    • Pre-ops meeting and formal briefing of senior staff, including briefing notes, Match Commanders brief and Stewards brief.
    • Match day log
    • Post match debrief
    • If required (disturbance, arrests, etc) post match report.

Crowd Management

Preparation for crowd management commences at the pre-ops meeting before an event and the following are utilised to monitor and manage spectator crowds:

    • Clarification of roles and responsibilities of Match Safety Officers, Head steward, and deployment of stewards
    • Steward training and the deployment of SIA Licensed stewards to hospitality areas
    • Steward and Police monitoring of crowd on approach
    • Car park monitoring and management by stewards
    • Turnstile monitoring
    • Use of public address system
    • Information provided in programmes, on the website, to supporters clubs and visiting clubs


The stewarding numbers are agreed each year with the Safety Officer and Board of Directors and detailed in the Safety Certificate.

Steward training includes training on Dumbarton Football Club’s crowd management strategy, codes of conduct and dress codes along with training for emergency situations. Each steward is issued with an aide memoir.

Inspection and Safety Reviews.

Before each event, stadium inspections are carried out and recorded by the Match Safety Officer.

Before each event stewards carry out a check of the safety measures and safe exit routes for their area and after each event carry out a stadium sweep inspection checking all seated areas for damage or risks for future events.


In revising the safety policies, procedures and audit documents each year in preparation for audit and the issue of the Safety Certificate, all relevant parties are consulted, both formally and informally for feedback and suggestions of improvements to performance, this includes:

    • Police
    • Scottish Ambulance Service
    • Building control, Environmental Health and Licensing departments of Council as appropriate
    • Security company providing stewards
    • Fire Stewards

In preparation for each event a pre-ops meeting is organised and all parties are requested to attend including:

    • General Manager
    • Match Safety Officer
    • Operational manager or Match Safety Officer for the visiting Club
    • Representative from AKC Event and Security
    • Representative from Stadium Catering


Policies and guidance are published on the Dumbarton Football Club website, issued to supporters clubs and published periodically in the programmes.

Ground Rules and the Unacceptable Behaviour Policy are posted at turnstiles and key locations throughout the stadium.

Fire Precautions

As a newly constructed stadium the buildings are designed to minimise fire risk as far as possible, and comply with all modern building regulations in terms of fire detection and alarm systems, fire fighting equipment provision, protected fire escapes and safe service provisions. 

The entire stadium is designated a no smoking area.

Pre-event inspections include assessing potential fire risks, I.e. litter build up, obstructed fire exits, etc

Before turnstiles open and during an event the stadium is patrolled by a Fire steward.

First Aid and Medical Provision

For each event the club ensures that first aid and medical provision meets (as a minimum) the requirements of the green guide in terms of numbers of first aid personnel and Ambulance Service Officer and Paramedic crew. The club also provides a club and crowd doctor.

The Joint Medical Plan, agreed by all parties is reviewed annually in preparation for the SFA audit and issue of the Safety Certificate.

Contingency Plan

The Clubs contingency plan is reviewed annually. Throughout the season key topics are the subject of stewarding briefings, exercises and training sessions. Stewards de-brief after each event is recorded so that improvements can be identified and implemented.

Maintenance of Records

The following records are held and maintained by the club:

    • Annual audit document
    • H&S File
    • All match day documents from pre-event planning and inspection to post match de-brief
    • Staffing records and payroll
    • Results of inspections and testing of structures and services, i.e. Scaff tagging, SECTA Electrical Installation Testing

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