BLBC Return to Play - Protocols & Procedures

We will be administering a phased in approach to the re-opening of our Club. This will ensure our Club's readiness to fully comply and implement all safety requirements as directed by the Federal, Provincial and Local Public Health Authorities.

Based on this staged re-opening, we will be able to identify which Return to Play Phase will best meet the current situation regarding the spread of Covid-19.

Phase 1 – training and practice only
Phase 2 – modified local games (singles and pairs games)
Phase 3 – intra club games
Phase 4 – regional/provincial competition

As our Board of Directors are not experts on pandemics, we therefore will rely on the Federal, Provincial and Local Public Health Authorities for their guidelines and directives. We have created this set of Protocols & Procedures to inform our members as to how Beaconsfield Lawn Bowling Club (BLBC) will respond to Covid-19 and to administer strict compliance to all directives as outlined in this document.

Phase 2 Readiness

This document contains a series of requirements for how we might imagine ‘rebooting’ our lawn bowling activity during the second phase of returning to play. It is understood that any and all decisions regarding the timing and protocol for a resumption of our bowling activity must adhere to the Federal, Provincial and Local Public Health Authorities.

Before implementing Phase 2 of our Return to Play protocols or before moving on to the next phase of Return to Play we will seek the approval from our Québec Lawn Bowling Association. This provincial body will work closely with Government representatives on what standards are required for our sport and recreation facilities.

We will identify the stage of physical distancing relaxation approved by local public health authorities and confirm that our Club is able to implement the required standards.

The Framework

Our Return to Play Protocols will include the following six areas.

  1. Pre-Screening
  2. Operations Protocols
    • a. Clubhouse
    • b. Common Storage and Equipment Use
    • c. Phase Appropriate Bowls Activity
  3. Our Expectations from Each Bowler
  4. Turf Maintenance
  5. General Safety Protocols
  6. Tracing Protocols

1. Pre-Screening

  • Ensure that all members are aware of the signs and symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Encourage members to use the Government of Canada tracking application to monitor and track symptoms before coming out to play. The use of this application would also help with the implementation of our tracing protocol.
  • Appoint a safety officer and a safety committee that will be responsible for overseeing and monitoring of the return to play protocols.

2. Protocols for Operations

  • a. Clubhouse
  • In all phases of our Return to Play Protocols, our clubhouse will remain closed to reduce the potential of infection spread. We will place signage by all entrances outlining the physical distancing guidelines in place, as well as hand-washing recommendations/protocols.
    • Bowlers will bring their own bottled drinking water.
    • A Sani-Vac (Portable Toilet) is provided for emergency use only. Members needing to use this facility are responsible for the sanitization before and after each use.
  • b. Protocol for Common Storage and Equipment Use
  • Bowlers will bring and use their personal bowls. In cases, where members do not have access to their own bowls, BLBC will assign a set of bowls to each member for the season.
    • We will designate a “sanitized” area and “unsanitary area” for club jacks.
    • Only the Safety Officer/Monitor will enter the storage area to retrieve sanitized club jacks for our members.
    • All jacks are to be used only once before being sanitized by the appointed Safety Officer/Monitor. Members who will use a jack should bring a sticker or colored bandage and mark their jacks before use.
    • Our Safety Officer/Monitor will wear appropriate PPE when sanitizing club jack.
  • c. Protocol for Phase 2 Bowls Activity – Modified local games (singles and pairs games)
    • Members will pre-schedule the use of a rink. Members without a pre-scheduled time will not to be permitted access to our greens.
    • Our online tool will allow members to pre-schedule their time on the greens. For those members that do not have internet access, they will be able to call in to pre-schedule their time slot.
    • As part of the sign-up process a commitment from members that they have completed the pre-screening and will adhere to club protocols during their session.
    • Members will complete the screening tools our Club has provided prior to arriving at the Club for their pre-scheduled time to bowl.
    • Playing time slots will not be more than an 1.5 hours during phase 2 .
    • We will designate separate entrance and exit points to our greens.
    • Bowlers should arrive no more than 5 minutes before their scheduled time slot to avoid loitering.
    • Please wait in or by your car should you arrive early for your pre-scheduled time slot.
    • A record of each member who arrives at the club will be kept identifying their arrival and departure times. We will be applying an online sign-up scheduling tool to assist with this process.
    • Bowlers should not congregate in the parking lot either before or after finishing bowling. Signs will be posted to remind bowlers of this protocol.
    • The number of people on a rink will be restricted to a maximum of four during Phase 2. Following local physical distancing legislation at all times.
    • There will be at least one empty rink between rinks being used.
    • Mats: At this stage, mats will not be used as they can be difficult to sanitize completely between uses. Bowlers are encouraged to bring a personal item such as a towel to mark the delivery area.
    • One bowler will be designated to be in charge of setting the jack with their foot.. All jacks will be cleaned and sanitized before and after each use.
    • Modified singles or pairs games will take place during Phase 2 of Return to Play.
    • Measurements: A visual assessment will be used to determine the closest bowl while at all times keeping a 2 metre distance from each other. Both players must agree, otherwise no point will be awarded.
    • Bowl and jack collection: One pusher/rake is permitted per rink. Only one person on each rink will be assigned the pusher. That person will be responsible for raking all the bowls at both ends. It is the responsibility of the assigned member to collect the pusher before the session, sanitize it, (by spraying & cleaning the handle with sanitizer provided), and then return it to its storage area after the session is over. No other members can touch the pusher. The jack will be picked up only by the person designated to handle that jack. A player can only pick up their own bowls and jack.
    • Care should be taken to avoid touching the other person's bowls or jack. If this should accidentally occur, please advise the Safety Officer immediately before touching any of your other bowls. The Safety Officer will provide both players sanitizer for your hands and your complete set of bowls or jack before play resumes.
    • Scoring: Scoreboards will not be available. One player will keep the running score on paper they must bring or keep a verbal score.
    • Screens will not be used.
    • Runners are not allowed.
    • Singles game: Singles will be played as normal singles with the provisions noted in this procedure. The game will last until one player reaches 21 points or the game has lasted 1.5 hours which ever comes first.
    • Pairs game: Pairs will be played as normal pairs with the provisions noted in this procedure. The game will last 10 ends or 1.5 hours which ever comes first. Each player will throw 3 bowls. At all times during the game, maintain a maximum of 2 players at each end. Use the adjacent empty rink if needed when crossing over to keep the 2 meter distance and keep on the right.
    • Benches are to used for sitting only, not for holding equipment.
    • Should coaches be available, they will maintain physical distancing practices, and will not share equipment with participants (including bowls, jacks, and mats). Coaches must adhere to all return to play protocols.
    • Appropriate signage will be posted throughout the playing area to advise participants of the safety protocols in place.

3. Our Expectations from Each Bowler

The following guidelines will be in force for Phase 2 of Return to Play. The guidelines and legislations of Provincial and Local Health Authorities will be respected and will take precedence over our Protocols and Procedures.

  • You must Pre-schedule the time you would like to play, you cannot just show up at the greens and expect to play.
  • Arrive no more than 5 minutes before your scheduled time of play and leave promptly when you are finished.
  • Practice physical distancing by staying a minimum of two metres away from each other at all times.
  • You wear a personal protective mask or face covering at all times when entering the premises. Masks can be removed while playing only if agreement is made with all players on the rink being played
  • Use your own bowls, club bowls will be provided if they are available.
  • Bring a small towel or a similar non-slip material to use in place of a mat.
  • Do not share equipment.
  • Do not shake hands or high five.
  • Do not visit with other people on or off the greens; stick to your assigned rink and maintain physical distancing.
  • No visitors will be allowed to accompany you on your scheduled bowling time slot.
  • Do not enter the shed or access any equipment.
  • Do not loiter in the parking lot before or after you have finished bowling.
  • Bring your own bottled water for drinking purposes.
  • Take home your own waste material.
  • If you are feeling unwell, regardless of the symptoms, stay home.

4. Turf Maintenance

BLBC is committed to the following recommendations and guidelines. At all times, the guidelines and legislations of Provincial and Local Health Authorities will be respected and will take precedence over our Protocols and Procedures.

  • For all phases, BLBC will continue to follow the safety standards for minimum requirements as provided on the Bowls Canada website.
  • Post COVID-19 symptom signage regarding physical distancing requirements.
  • Post protocols for operations and safety both on our website and on our greens.

5. General Safety Protocols

The following guidelines will be in force for our entire season. At all times, the guidelines and legislations of Provincial and Local Health Authorities will be respected and will take precedence over these general safety protocols.

  • Educate volunteers and participants to recognize the symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Establishing a communication plan through Zoom meetings to keep volunteers and participants informed and updated on issues affecting our Club.
  • Establishing a policy that requires volunteers and participants to inform us when they’ve been exposed to any highly communicable illness. Directing them to the local health agency for testing. Implement a screening program to ensure all volunteers and participants are healthy and have not travelled outside of Canada. Will recommend our members to use the Government of Canada tracking application for this purpose.
  • Conduct all meetings by phone or online. No in-person meetings will be required.
  • Ensuring appropriate signage is posted throughout the facility.
    • COVID-19 symptom signage at entrance points,
    • handwashing techniques and waste removal in the washrooms,
    • rules and safety protocols in all common areas on the greens.
  • Educating volunteers and participants on proper hand washing and hygiene techniques.
    • Providing necessary sanitation supplies such as wipes and hand sanitizer,
    • Ensuring hand washing signage is present at all hand washing stations.
  • Recommending that bowlers wash their hands frequently rather than wear gloves.
  • Providing hand sanitizer stations for volunteers and participants in multiple locations.
  • It will be mandatory that all bowlers wear their own personal mask or an adequate face covering while on the premises.
  • For Safety Officers/Monitors, protective face shields and face masks will be provided and must be worn at all times while on the premises.

Any individual who intentionally does not follow the safety precautions or other guidelines that our Club has adopted and posted will be asked to leave the premises immediately. This individual will be dealt with in accordance to our existing By-Laws.

6. Tracing Protocol

  • BLBC will follow the tracing protocols established by our local health authorities.
  • BLBC will facilitate the notification of our members and those directly impacted should a participant test positive for Covid-19.
  • BLBC will support the local government tracing protocols if and when requested to do.