When working in the Parks and Recreation field, there are certain procedures that are absolutely vital in terms of not just keeping properties in good condition but also keeping your agency protected. One of those procedures is regular inspection of systems, equipment and structures. Here are some reasons why inspections are critical, as well as information about how to streamline your inspections processes.
Regular Inspections Help Reduce Emergency Response Necessities
In some cases, regular inspections are part of preventive park maintenance. That means they are used to spot issues that could become problems later. For example, regular inspection of electrical systems can help to prevent costly electrical fires. Similarly, structural inspections can help you make sure structures are safe for visitors before those visitors ever arrive, such as at the start of a season after a winter closure.
Regular Inspections Also Lower Repair Costs
When performed as part of predictive park maintenance routines, regular inspections can also lower long-term repair costs. For example, your predictive maintenance tracking software may indicate that certain systems tend to decline after a set period of time. If so, scheduling inspections for those time frames allows you to perform minor maintenance before systems start to fail. Total systems or equipment failures are usually much more costly to correct than minor wear. They can also sometimes require facilities to close complete for repairs. It is best to head such issues off before they snowball out of control.
You May Need Regular Inspections to Meet Risk Management Agency Requirements
Another reason to perform regular inspections as a Parks and Recreations worker is simply because you have to. For example, the Park District Risk Management Agency (PDRMA) requires you to meet OSHA standards and other requirements on a regular basis. Only regular inspections can guarantee that you continuously meet those standards.
Regular Inspections Reduce Public Safety Risks and Protect Your Agency
Of course, the risk management agency (RMA) with which your company is associated may not be PDRMA. Your RMA might have regulations that are less strict. Alternatively, there may be no RMA associated with your company at all. However, regular inspections are still vital. They reduce public safety risks and lower the chances of your organization being sued due to accidents occurring on the property or properties you manage.
If your agency is ever sued due to an accident occurring, inspection records are required. They can help you indicate that your staff has done everything possible to monitor all aspects of the property involved. Without those records, it can be difficult to win a court decision, if not impossible to do so.
Why Keeping Track of Regular Inspection Data is Critical
Performing regular inspections is not the only vital step in the process. You also must keep track of the regular inspection data continuously each year. One reason for that, as mentioned above, is if a lawsuit ever occurs you may need to look back at your records from a certain time period. Another is that keeping records over time helps you get to know the properties, systems and equipment you manage. Looking at inspection data collected over long periods can help you identify patterns. Thus, you can streamline your parks and recreation management processes using that information.