Walking Group – Safety Habits. Responsibilities •
The walk leader is responsible for the safety measures employed before and during a walk. This means describing the walk, guiding the group on the
correct path, not getting lost or losing any member of the group. •
Each individual is responsible for their own food, water, preparation and equipment. The leader should warn members of, and avoid hazards such as cliff
edges, slippery tracks, and dangerous trees. •
It is not advisable to walk in high winds, high temperatures over 30 Deg C, bushfire areas, areas made slippery by heavy rains. Under these conditions the
Water Individuals must carry their own water requirements. The recommended minimum amount of water to carry on all but the easiest of bushwalks is 2 litre per day. Participation The leader may refuse to take a person whose fitness to complete the walk is doubtful, for example, asthmatic and not carrying Ventolin, a heart condition needing medication, or a disability which may affect the overall walk. Group Procedures o
The preferred minimum size group is four, this includes the leader and 3 others.
An experienced person should be placed at the rear to monitor the progress of the group.
Inform the leader if you need to stop for any reason.
A head count should be taken regularly, track junctions or open areas are ideal for this purpose. Wait for slower members to catch up before continuing
The group must not travel faster than the slowest person. Slow members must not be left behind.
Members should advise the leader if they are experiencing difficulty or the pace is too fast and they feel stressed.
If a walker is missing, check with the rest of the group to establish where the walker was last seen.
If you get separated from the group, stay put. We will come back to find you.
To locate a missing walker, retrace your steps to the point last seen, checking any alternative ways they may have gone.
If the missing person is not found in a reasonable time, eg 1 hour, leave markers at the point last seen and note the map or GPS location.
Obtain help (report to the police or other search group).
Injuries should be treated by a qualified first aider if possible. If casualty can't continue then two capable people should go for help. It may be advisable to cancel the walk and return to the start point even if the injury is minor, and is such that it may deteriorate, if the walk progresses.
Safe Bushwalking Habits to Adopt • Give the complete bushwalk route details of where you are going to close relatives or friends. • Tell them when you are leaving and returning and anyone's special medical conditions eg diabetes, asthma, heart condition etc. • Notify them of your safe return. • Take the correct map and compass and know how to use them. • Use appropriate clothing and footwear; consider a windproof or waterproof jacket and clothing that can keep you dry and warm. • Stop at regular intervals to rest the group, every hour and packs off for 5 or10 minutes. • Wait at track intersections to "ensure" that bushwalkers lagging behind "don't" get lost. • And now the Don’ts.
• Don't over estimate your abilities to complete a bushwalk, refer to the grades, always allow time for the unexpected eg thick scrub, cliff lines. • Don't go faster than the slowest member of your group. At regular intervals do a head count of your group. • Don't split up your walking group during the trip (except for a rescue), there is safety in numbers. • Don't leave an injured person alone in the bush. A walking group of three or more will allow one to look after the injured while the other goes for help. • Don't keep moving when lost; find a campsite nearby with water that will be visible from a helicopter. Wave vigorously at any helicopters - they are
1. Basic first aid kit, including snake bite bandages. 2. Mobile phone, charged and turned on. 3. Map, compass and/or GPS. 4. A double dose of common sense.
BE SAFE HAVE FUN. Version 1. Date 8th May 2013.
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