Risk Assessment (COVID -19)
Completed prior to the anticipated weekly opening of the church building
for Fellowship and Worship
This Assessment will remain under constant review so as address any new regulations or future considerations
The assessment takes into consideration the UK and Wales Senedd / Government rules, requirements and guidelines and also the specific requirements of a variety of church, chapels and organisations such as EFCC.
It addresses the safety of – People, Premises, Procedures and Practices
Risk Assessment of 10.8.2020 (v6) : Page 1 of 5
GENERAL NOTE – Prior to the commencement of the initial planned fellowship service, the chapel will be deep cleaned.
For all services the outer doors to remain open for maximum ventilation.
Church members and known adherents will be advised by letter of the event instructing them of the prime controls and procedures.
A copy of such a letter is attached to this assessment and retained in the Church H& S Manual.
At least three Duty Deacons will be present at the chapel to advise, assist and guide attendees. ( Prepare Rota)
ENTRY AND EXIT – Signage will show –
Entrance will be through the main gate of the chapel leading to the main door (Display Directional Posters)
Exit will be through the back door of the chapel and the (smaller) side gate (Display Directional Posters)
SOCIAL DISTANCING –
Posters showing the 2 metre social distancing requirement will be displayed at church entry and exit areas.
Church entry pathway will be marked with 2 Metre lines and arrows between gate entry and chapel doorway.
Similarly, 2 metre distance spacing lines with arrows will be marked between the chapel exit door and exit gate
Selected seating within the chapel ensures the Pastor is situated well away from the congregation and no further shielding is necessary
(v6) : Page 2 of 5
Should any person be unable to use the steps to the front door of the chapel the Duty Deacon at the front door will prevent the entry of approaching persons while a second Duty Deacon will escort the person – experiencing difficulty – through the back door (exit) of the chapel, thus avoiding the risk of crossing the paths of others.
HAND SANITISATION – Prior to each worship service all door handles, handrails and similar areas of contact will be sanitised.
For use by all those attending, a hand sanitiser will be set adjacent to both the (front) entry and (back) exit doorways.
FACE COVERING – The Welsh Government rules do not insist upon the wearing of face covering (masks) in places of worship but recommends persons 70 year old and over together those with specific health problems to seriously exercise their personal choice regarding the implications of attending the service and /or the wearing of face covering.
TOILET FACILITIES – Prior to the initial service each water tap within the toilet and kitchen area will be allowed to run at full flow for a minimum of one minute so as ensure the stagnant water has been flushed from the system.
Of the two available toilets, only one toilet facility (the disabled) will be prepared for use at this time
The unused facility will be posted “Not to be used”.
Additional signage demonstrating the recommended hand washing procedure will be made available together with hand soap, a hand sanitiser and a notice requesting each person to sterilise contaminated areas after each use.
While the chapel is occupied for service only one person is permitted at any time within the toilet area.
This requirement being monitored, by a Duty Deacon
(v6) : Page 3 of 5
KITCHEN FACILITY – All kitchen facilities are closed. An appropriate “Not to be used” sign will be displayed in this area.
Therefore the making and serving of tea, biscuits, etc. is not permitted.
Should individuals wish to avail themselves of drinking water then they are requested to bring their own.
ENTRY AND SEATING – Following arrival at the front door and sanitising of hands, each person will be greeted by a Duty Deacon who, while adhering to the 2 metre social distancing, will escorted the person to their named seat.
Pre-arranged seating, spaced at the 2 metre distancing, will be on both the ground floor and balcony from where access and egress is marked by ‘one way’ arrows and social distancing lines.
Subsequent movement from the allocated seat is not permitted until directed to leave the building.
SEATING ARRANGEMENT – All seats will be reserved by marking the name of each perceived attendee on a card (or similar).
The card being inserted into a clear plastic folder which can be effectively sanitised after each service.
(Pertinent and useful instruction to the attendees will be included on each of these seat marking cards)
Additional seats will be allocated and marked “For visitors”.
For personal safety from possible Covid-19 virus infections all chapel cushions will be removed.
(v6) : Page 4 of 5
COMMUNICATION – Voice communication between persons within the chapel building must be low volume.
There will be no singing and no speaking loudly by members of the congregation.
Electronic amplification will be used by the Pastor throughout the service.
The reciting of “The Lord’s Payer” is permitted but only when spoken with a quiet voice
PEW BIBLES – No distribution of chapel hymn books or (pew) Bibles. For personal safety these will be removed.
Fellowship attendees may bring their own Bibles, but these must be taken home after every service.
CHURCH OFFERING – Church offerings may be deposited in an appropriate and identified location separate from that occupied by the congregation.
ORGAN PLAYING – Whilst at this time there remains some confusion regarding the playing of ‘wind driven’ church organs, we understand the law in Wales does not permit such action, therefore the pipe organ will not be used during fellowship services. However the playing of piano or electronic keyboard is permitted.
COMMUNION SERVICE – Communion will not be observed pending a further (future) risk assessment.
(v6) : Page 5 of 5
DEPARTURE – The service will be conducted in the shortest possible time
A Duty Deacon will invite people to depart from their seats ‘row by row’ so as to avoid the risk of crossing the paths of others. Social distancing being observed at all times
All attendees must leave the chapel building through the back door, following the direction arrows and 2 Metre social distancing.
HAND SANITISATION – A hand sanitiser will be available adjacent to the exit door.
Persons departing from the chapel will be encouraged not to congregate inside or outside but to observe the 2 Metre social distancing markings and follow the arrows on the pathway to the smaller “Exit” gate.
CHAPEL CLEANING – With due regard for current rules and guidelines concerning single weekly church services, no Covid-19 sanitisation is planned between services. However, there remains a routine cleaning protocol within the fellowship.