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Risk Management

Managing Risk:

Special event organizers have both a legal and practical duty to ensure their guests drink responsibly.

For large scale events, especially where the general public is admitted you should always prepare a risk management plan.

A properly prepared risk management plan will help identify potential problems.

The key elements of such a plan are:

  • Conducting a thorough safety inspection of your premises.
  • Communicating the risk management plan and the emergency action plan to all staff.
  • Establishing and posting house policies and ensure that everyone knows what they are.
  • Developing an emergency action plan and include a chain of command.
  • Acquiring insurance coverage and any necessary permits.
  • Arranging for safe transportation home for your guests.
  • Ensuring all staff/ volunteers are Smart Serve trained.
  • Having a Smart Serve Incident Reporting Log on hand to record details of all guest incidents.
Reducing Risk

You can lower your risk by learning how to prevent guests from overindulging at your next event. This includes:

  • Never allowing already intoxicated people into your event
  • Never serving minors, and checking the ID of people you suspect are under 25
  • Discouraging excessive drinking or serving alcohol to anyone you suspect may already be intoxicated
  • Preventing drunken, violent or disorderly conduct at the event
  • Never letting guests drink and drive
  • Never making drinking the focus of your event
  • Serving alcohol only within the allowed hours (Monday to Saturday 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.)
  • Always serving food with alcohol
  • Offering a variety of low-alcohol and alcohol-free drinks at a reasonable price

You may also lessen your risk by hiring a licensed caterer or bartender who has completed Smart Serve training.