First Aid and Welfare on Location

Date: 18.08.2016     Last updated: 09.07.2018 at 10.42
A guide to provision of first aid and welfare facilities when working on location, away from base.

What Can Go Wrong?

  • Lack of first aid can result in delays getting treatment if injured, leading to potentially more serious outcomes.
  • Increased likelihood of injury during rig/derig, especially in poor light conditions.
  • Increased stress and or fatigue, where adequate welfare facilities are not available.

Legal/BBC Requirements

  • The Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations 1981 require you to provide adequate and appropriate first-aid equipment, facilities and people so your employees can be given immediate help if they are injured or taken ill at work.
  • What is ‘adequate and appropriate’ will depend on the circumstances in your workplace and you should assess what your first-aid needs are.
  • It is important to remember that accidents and illness can happen at any time. First-aid provision needs to be available at all times people are at work.

Control Measures

General Controls

  • It is the responsibility of the Producer to ensure that there is adequate first aid cover for all productions, including outside broadcasts, events and location work. This may involve collaboration with other employers. It may be convenient to provide the necessary level of first aid cover by training assistant floor managers and production managers.
  • If filming/recording/broadcasting in a venue, local welfare facilities and first aid provision may well exist. However the facilities may not be open for use throughout the entire production period. So production should check what local arrangements exist and decide if further provision is required to suit the schedule.
  • Anyone who acts in role of 'First Aider' must have completed successfully either the First Aid at Work course (FAW) or the Emergency First Aid at Work Course (EFAW) from a suitable training provider within the last 3 years (or have had subsequent refresher training within that period). 'First Aiders' are usually required for medium and higher risk activities.
  • Anyone who acts as an 'Appointed Person’ does not require to have first aid training, however they should be familiar with the location of the first aid facilities and know how to summon suitable First Aid if required. Appointed Persons' are usually required for lower risk activities.
  • The number of FAW First Aiders, EFAW First Aiders, & Appointed Persons required for any production should be determined by a First Aid Needs Assessment.

Factors to consider in making a judgement on first aid needs on a production include:

  • Nature of hazard and risks present, including any higher risk or stunt activities.
  • Number and nature of persons present, including contractors and audiences.
  • Existing location arrangements.
  • Remoteness from emergency medical services.
  • A fully stocked and up to date first aid kit - available from Safety Equipment Stores; appropriate contents of kit to be checked by First Aider prior to work on location.
  • Arrangements for managing emergencies planned in advance, in co-ordination with the local authority and emergency services.
  • A means of contacting the local emergency services land-line telephone or mobile, with contact details.
  • Briefing all present on location about the first aid provisions and when the arrangements are available.

First aid supplies should also be part of the planning and referred to in the production/event risk assessment, the minimum first-aid provision for low risk productions of 5-50 people is:

  • a suitably stocked first-aid box
  • an appointed person to take charge of first-aid arrangement
  • information for employees about first-aid arrangements

Production or event medical services

  • First aid and welfare facilities for larger or remote Productions / OBs /Events, facilities may need to be brought on location. The provision might include Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT); Ambulance Technicians; paramedics; production nurses; ambulances and other specialist vehicles; depending on the level and nature of the risks.
  • BBC Safety and Procurement have vetted medical services providers to ensure they meet the BBC's requirements. This includes ensuring the providers hold necessary qualifications and insurances, that they have been CRB-checked and that they are registered with The Care Quality Commission. Please see the procurement page about Production and Event Medical Services for more information.

BBC vehicles and travel

  • First aid training or emergency first aid training should be offered to travelling staff, for example, rigger drivers (who are present at Outside Broadcast venues), transmitter engineers (who may undertake hazardous work in isolated locations), and Building and Engineering Services staff.
  • First aid kits should be installed in BBC vehicles used in outside broadcasts by travelling engineers, or by any other groups of workers on BBC business in remote areas or isolated locations. Staff who have to travel extensively may also need training in first aid.

Injuries

  • Where injury occurs on location and first aid is given, a BBC accident form must be completed and outline details of the first aid and any subsequent treatment (e.g. by doctors) provided.

Welfare

  • Indoors or outdoors, it is important to ensure that there are adequate first aid provision and welfare facilities (eg, toilets, clean drinking water and a place to eat and rest) for staff and contractors on site, during all phases of production.
  • Ensure the provision of good lighting during all phases of production, particularly during the rig and de-rig phase.

Division Specific Issues

  • There are no Division specific issues

FAQs/Did You Know?

  • You can buy/hire first aid provision and other facilities from the Safety Equipment Store. 
  • You can contract medical personnel and facilities from the BBC Pre Vetted Contractor list.

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This site describes what the BBC does in relation to managing its health, safety and security risks and is intended for those who work directly for the BBC.

It is not intended to provide instruction or guidance on how third parties should manage their risks. The BBC cannot be held liable for how this information is interpreted or used by third parties, nor provide any assurance that adopting it would provide any measure of legal compliance. More information.


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