WT 14: Activity Technical and Safety Requirements
The organization considers safety and technical requirements, competence of leaders, and the abilities of participants when engaging in potentially demanding activities.
The activities listed below do not have to be certified or accredited by a recognized authority to achieve COA accreditation
. However, organizations that choose to be certified to provide any of the activities listed below, can submit proof of certification
as evidence of implementation for WT 14.
Note: An organization that engages in any of the following activities meets associated federal or state safety and technical requirements:
- initiative and problem-solving activities;
- hiking or backpacking;
- group expeditions;
- environmental projects;
- bicycle touring;
- remote travel;
- flat water canoeing, kayaking, or rafting;
- cross-country skiing;
- ropes courses, climbing towers, and artificial wall climbing; and
- other activities with a limited degree of percieved or actual risk for which its personnel are appropriately prepared.
Before initiation of an activity, the organization:
- orients personnel to the terrain, sites, or waterways that will be used;
- verifies that personnel have direct experience with, and up-to-date information about, the conditions that may be encountered; and
- provides participants with complete information about geographic boundaries for the activity, rendezvous times and places, and emergency procedures.
The organization evaluates potentially demanding activities for level of difficulty and undertakes only those within the competence of the leaders and the abilities of participants.
When the activity involves travel or movement, participants receive instruction in pacing, fluid intake
, clothing and footwear, equipment, and possible hazards.
Activities addressed in this standard may include hiking, running, climbing, canoeing, bicycle touring, or similar pursuits.
Participants and personnel use protective gear and equipment as appropriate, including:
- personal flotation devices (Type III) for water activities;
- location devices and reflectors for dusk and night activities;
- helmets for biking, climbing, caving, or other appropriate activities; and
- other protective gear and equipment as appropriate to the activity to be undertaken.
As applicable to the activities, the organization maintains clear guidelines and trains personnel and participants on safely building and extinguishing fires.
Ropes courses, alpine or climbing towers, and artificial wall climbing activities meet the following requirements:
- the facilities and equipment used have been constructed by or are under the supervision of recognized experts in the field;
- personnel have been trained by recognized experts in the field and have a working knowledge of ropes course and climbing equipment elements, technology, construction, usage and inspection; and
- appropriate inspection and safety procedures have been fully implemented.
COA does not approve, certify, or accredit ropes courses, alpine or climbing towers, or artificial wall climbing programs
. The organization must seek independent review by recognized experts for that purpose. The organizationís primary responsibility is to ensure the safety of participants and personnel. Therefore, WT 14.06 applies both to facilities owned or operated by the organization, and those used by the organizationís participants but owned and operated by others. In all cases
, the organization must provide authoritative information regarding compliance with accepted standards for special program components.
NA The organization does not offer ropes courses, alpine or climbing towers, or artificial-wall climbing activities.
Youth who participate in Wilderness and Adventure-based Therapeutic Outdoor Services
expand individual capabilities, develop self-confidence and insight, ameliorate symptoms, and improve interpersonal skills and relationships.