Field trip instruction

Instruction statement

The purpose of this instruction is to provide guidance on the health and safety aspects of off-campus activities and field work

This instruction is applicable University-wide



Instruction steps and actions

This instruction is to be used in conjunction with the Field Trip Checklist and Field Trip Risk Assessment Form (DOC 205KB, 6p).

Communication devices

Appropriate communication devices like mobile or satellite phones should be carried on all field trips. Checks need to occur before a field trip that the communication device has coverage for the field trip location. This is especially important for remote locations where Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons can be considered.


Field trip Leaders are responsible for participants and for ensuring that appropriate guidance and supervision is maintained for the duration of the field trip, including during free time. Incident/hazard report forms needed to be completed if any incident or accident occurs. Field Trip Leaders need to communicate the alcohol and drugs procedure.

Site hazards

An inspection will need to be undertaken of the site. Hazards will need to be identified and controls will need to be put into place. Hazards may include cold conditions, falling trees, or Alpine areas. For example, if the field site has a river nearby then the following controls could be put into place:

  • Instruct students as to the possible dangers.
  • Students are to go near the river only under supervision.
  • A trained first aider should be part of the field trip.


Chemicals need to be identified and stored properly. Material Safety Data Sheets should be obtained. Risks to health will need to be identified and a plan to control these needs to be established. Controls could include substituting the chemical for a less dangerous one, instruction of students on the safe use of the chemicals and using the correct personal protective equipment.


The following controls may be options for safeguarding electrical work:

  • General electrical safety induction given to all students and staff.
  • Instructions given to users on safe electrical work.
  • Regular maintenance and inspection of electrical equipment.
  • Residual current devices installed.


All safety equipment needs to be of an approved design, meet Australian Standards, be regularly inspected and maintained.

Biological hazards

As per checklist.

Refer to the Travel policy or Working offshore policy and Working offshore procedure regarding vaccinations.

Manual handling

Some controls to reduce the risk of manual handling are:

  • Team lifting to share the weight of the load.
  • Appropriate footwear.
  • Limit the size of loads.
  • Rotate the lifting amongst a number of people.

Off site OHS induction

An off site health and safety briefing should be undertaken to explain the hazards involved in the field trip and for students to sign that they have been advised of the Safe Work Instruction / Risk Assessment. During this induction safety rules for the field work need to be explained clearly and questions should be answered. The alcohol and drugs procedure needs to be explained.


An emergency First Aid Kit which includes sun block and insect repellent must be carried on all field trips and staff with a senior first aid (level 2) qualification should be in attendance. Details of the nearest hospital or medical centre need to be known before departure. Students with medical conditions should notify these to the field trip coordinator. The field trip coordinator should notify a contact in the school about estimated time of return and also emergency phone numbers to contact the field trip group.

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