Off-Ice Safety

As a member of the Organizing Committee, many of your responsibilities are off-ice activities.

Do not sign any rink rental agreement or other contract that transfers liability for the actions of individuals who are not under your control, direction or supervision. If you are concerned about the contents of the contract, the Hockey Alberta Office will provide you with information about how the contract can be reviewed by Hockey Canada’s insurer.

Work closely with arena management and staff to ensure that:

  • Dressing rooms are free from debris, cleaned regularly, properly lit and checked for any electrical or fire hazards.

  • All teams and officials know the location of Fire Exits and First Aid Kits within the arena facility, and that all Fire Exits are accessible.

  • The bench and penalty box areas are free from tape or other debris that may become fastened to or damage skate blades.

  • Solid, rubber padding or other non-slip surface is available for participants and officials to walk on from dressing room area to the ice surface, and hallways are properly lit and free from electrical and fire hazards.

  • Concessions are free from electrical and fire hazards, and that any volunteers are trained in the operation of all appliances and equipment, and are aware of all hazards within the concession area.

  • Walkways and parking lots leading to arena entrances are free from snow, ice, water or debris and any hazards are clearly marked.

  • Any banners are securely and safely fastened and that all safety precautions are taken in the hanging of any banners or signs.

  • All wet floors and spills are attended to quickly to help make sure no one slips on any wet surfaces.

  • Ensure there are game announcements and signage pertaining to the dangers of pucks leaving the ice surface.

  • Players must be supervised at all times, including in the dressing room and while proceeding to the ice surface.

  • Ensure that only qualified personnel work with television equipment and that cables and wires are positioned so they do not pose a danger.

  • Ensure that all press areas are free from dangers such as fire hazards or wet floors, and if there is a suspended press box in the arena facility, caution media members and others using it about the dangers of dropping debris onto the crowd below.

  • When organizing events where food and drinks will be served, ensure that you utilize a reliable, responsible catering company, that all food is prepared properly, and all health standards have been observed. Also be aware of special diets and food allergies of any participants.

  • Ensure that all potential billets are carefully screened (using the 10 Step process outlined in Section 7), and that only responsible, reliable billets, who meet the standards outlined by Hockey Canada are chosen. Inform billets of any special needs of the players they will be billeting, including illnesses, medication and dosage guidelines and any special dietary requirements.

  • Monitor weather and road conditions during all events and keep all drivers informed; do not take any chances with unsafe road conditions. Those involved with transporting teams, organizers, officials and other participants must never consume alcohol before operating a motor vehicle, and no one involved in the tournament should ever have alcohol in their possession while traveling in a motor vehicle. Select only reliable, responsible adults to transport participants during the event and to drive any courtesy automobiles.

  • Recruit only reliable, responsible adults to work as arena security personnel and ensure that fan and gate control are part of security personnel responsibilities. Security personnel should make spectator safety their first priority at all times.

  • Make every effort to ensure that off-ice officials make safety the first priority at all times and that penalty box attendants exercise caution when dealing with players.

  • Recruit only reliable, responsible adults to act as team hosts and liaisons, and insist that hosts and liaisons make safety the first priority in all activities with visiting teams.


Officials Box: The box for the game time-keeper, penalty time keeper and official score keeper must be protected by glass. 

Evacuation Procedure: All arenas should have an established evacuation procedure in the event of a fire, gas leak or other problem. You should have a copy of this policy and make sure that the arena staff is also aware of the policy and how to assist in evacuating the facility. Someone should be assigned the responsibility of communicating the procedure to all players on every team.

Emergency Exits: Emergency exits should be checked to make sure that they are operational, clearly marked and that the pathway to the exits is clear of any obstacles.

Emergency Medical Facilities: Many arenas have a First Aid Room that contains emergency first aid supplies and equipment such as stretchers and/or backboards. Arrangements should be made to ensure that the room is accessible during both practices and games.

Telephone: In the event of an emergency, rapid access to a telephone can be of critical importance. Coin telephones can be rendered inoperative by vandalism, so if there is a telephone located in an office, it is important the rink staff have access to that office so the telephone can be used in the event of emergency.

Heating System: If the facility has a heating facility, it should be checked regularly to ensure it is operating effectively and, especially in the use of natural gas systems, that there are no leaks.

Alarm System: The operator of the facility should be able to demonstrate to your satisfaction that there is an operational alarm system for use in the event of fire or other emergency and that it is tested on a regular basis. All participants should be made aware of the sound made by the alarm (bell, buzzer, etc.) and what to do if it should go off.

Other Danger Areas: Walkways and stairways should be properly marked and lighted. Handrails and railings should be well anchored. Zamboni access routes should be clearly marked. Facilities for the handicapped, if available, should be clearly indicated.

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