John has been playing golf for 35 years and been a single figure handicapper for the last 25 years.
John is a member of both the Golf Course Managers Association as well as the British and International Greenkeepers Association therefore he is well informed on the wide world of golf.
Featured Article: When Knockout Stops Play
When I played on Monday last week at Deanwood I tee'd a duff one off the 6th tee and went into the little trees. Kim and I went to look for the ball and it was lodged at the base of a tree. We were just doing the "technically speaking" bit and using a club to mark out where to drop the ball and heard someone shout "FORE!"
Kim said, "Watch out!" and I just moved my head a fraction and took the full pelt of the ball on my shoulder - lucky girl! Although I have a golf shaped bruise on it now ha ha!
Now what is the etiquette ?
The guy just put his hand up, and carried on, but should he have come over?
If you do hit someone in the head and knock them out how do you notify the club ? Does it stop play (haha) ?
Well, technically speaking, above all else it would have been not just good etiquette but the bare minimum for this chap to come over and see that you are all ok. Of course he didn't hit it into the trees on purpose but "sorry" is the least he should offer.
You didn't say whether this chap was playing the same hole as you and if so did you waive him through? This brings up a whole new set of questions.
Getting back to your question...
I can safely say that should anyone be unfortunate enough to be knocked out on a golf course it would stop play (particularly for them).
For the rest of the group play could continue although during winter months care should be taken not to leave unconscious bodies in snow for too long as frostbite may affect that players ability to dial for assistance when they come round.
Almost all groups on a modern golf course will have at least one person with a mobile phone and the clubs phone number is usually on the scorecard. There will usually be a first aider on site and an ambulance should be called if there is any doubt.
Insurance for golf injuries is available privately and many golf clubs these days include insurance in a green fee.
It is however a risk you are accepting when you walk onto a golf course that accidents happen. Good manners and common sense are the main tools golfers should use in these situations.
An interesting article on this subject was published recently