Hints and tips for a safe litter pick or beach clean

FRecycle Devon logoollow our guide so you have a good experience with your group. We strongly advise that you complete a risk assessment in accordance with your community group policy and follow any recommendations from that too. You can download a template risk assessment here.

Make sure your volunteers:

  • dress for the weather – they should wrap up well if it’s cold or windy, waterproof coats and boots if rainy and loose clothing with a hat if hot and sunny
  • wear sunscreen and hats – even a cloudy day can burn fair skinned people
  • can be seen – everyone needs to wear a high vis vest
  • take care on slippery or steep surfaces
  • avoid nettle, thorny hedges and bramble patches – guard against scratches and carry a first aid kit in case they do get scratched
  • drink plenty of water – volunteers should bring water bottles (refillable of course!)
  • don’t go on roads – warn volunteers not to go near busy roads
  • stay safe – check tide times and make sure you know where is safe when beach cleaning
  • don’t pick up hazardous materials (such as needles, medical waste, dead animals)
  • ensure children and/or vulnerable adults are supervised at all times
  • work together in small groups and agree a time and place for the whole group to meet up again, ensure group leaders/supervising adults have mobile phones in case of an emergency
  • in the case of an outbreak/ongoing risk of Coronavirus or similar epidemic, group leader(s) to put correct measures in place e.g. physically distancing and limited groups sizes in line with current government guidelines