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Can you spot the accidents waiting to happen in these photos?

Were these staged, or did they all really happen? I'm not saying...

Why not use these photos to train your own teams to spot 'accidents waiting to happen'? Think about the dangers in your context. Take a photo and let me know.

Let me know if you've got more ideas, if there's anything else you need or if anything can be improved.

Table in Front of Door.jpg

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Table blocking the fire exit

Always make sure all leaders know where fire exits are, how to operate them and where to meet after evacuation.  


Partition without feet extended

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Always make sure partitions have feet turned at right angles to the upright. That way, leaning on them doesn't make them fall.

Health and safety photos
Music Sheets.jpg

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Slip hazard

Music on the floor, especially more than one piece, and especially music contained in 'slippery fish' aka plastic wallets.

Chair Stack.jpg

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Trip hazard

Watch any wires or ties laid on the floor. Plastic hoops are a classic, designed to step on with one foot, lift the hoop and trip with your other foot.


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Table supports not locked

The right leg support is not straight. If a young person leans on that side, the table will collapse, maybe depositing hot chocolate on them...

Flip Chart.jpg

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Flip chart too vertical

Anything tall that is stored with insufficient angle, will easily fall over if knocked. Lean it more or store it on its side or better still, out of the way.

Box on Stairs.jpg

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Trip hazard

What could be worse than putting a solid box at low level? Leaving it at the top of the stairs.

Chair Stack 2.jpg

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Chairs not tied down

It's a tall, heavy stack. What if someone climbs the stack? Make sure chairs are tied down to the trolley. 

Stairwell - Compressed_edited.jpg

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Hot drinks on a handrail

Full? Yes. Hot? Yes. On a handrail above a stairwell? Yes. Is that in the top three of the most dangerous things I've seen? Yes.

Wire on Speaker.jpg

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Imagine pulling the wire...

It even looks like a noose, but a wire solidly attached to the back of a very heavy speaker above head height, with a pull hanging down...

WhatsApp Image 2023-02-18 at 15.43.41 (2).jpeg

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Stone near table tennis table

Tricky one this one, but imagine playing 'Round the World'. You're running round the table, eye on the ball to take your shot and you run, straight into a solid stone, jutting out at head height.

WhatsApp Image 2023-03-28 at 20.29_edited.jpg

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Metal wedge fits under safety barrier

Next level! Metal door wedge on a first floor landing in the stairwell. Look closely and there's a gap under the safety barrier. What if someone kicks the wedge under the barrier as someone is about to come up the stairs? Get a larger wedge.

It's really important that we take the safety of the young people in our care really seriously. If you haven't yet read my book 'Raising the Bar', do please buy it. The book has a chapter on The Law, Health and Safety. One of the reasons I wrote the book, was to pass on nearly 30 years of experience in one go. 

Please do consider the Worst Case Scenario, not to stop the young people having any fun, but to take preventative measures before something avoidable happens.

You can download a blank risk assessment form here.

Buy Raising the Bar here.


Round the World 2 Escape Room.jpg




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Links to resources


Get more ideas and support for your youth ministry with my book: "RAISING THE BAR: Nearly Everything You Need to Know about Christian Youth Ministry."

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