This week we are approaching the one year anniversary of the terrorism attacks at the Boston Marathon. In light of last year’s horrific experience, Boston authorities will increase security for this year’s event. This will involve the presence of more uniformed and undercover police officers along the marathon route. They will install additional cameras around 50 observation points. Spectators are being encouraged to leave large items like backpacks and strollers at home. Additional EMS personals will be positioned along the marathon route in Boston.
EPG Security provides security at a number of sporting events. Let me share with you some of the ingredients we use in planning with large public events with our clients.
Sporting Event Security
First and foremost, effective collaboration must be established between event managers and safety and security providers. This facilitates communication and reduces suspicion and distrust. Turf wars between organizations must be avoided as they inevitably lead to inefficiencies, duplication of efforts, and serious gaps in safety and security plans.
Effective communication is vital to a trouble-free event. An interactive communication strategy and an outreach plan should be developed as early as possible. Planners must communicate effectively with all event stakeholders including fans, athletes, organizing committees, and sponsors.
The safety and security plan should be a component of the overall comprehensive event plan. In other words, all planning efforts must be integrated to ensure seamless, successful operations. Organizers should prepare for the worst while hoping for the best. The process should anticipate all possible hazards that may occur during the event.
There must be clear channels and protocols for reporting and responding to suspicious activity. These should be tested prior to the event during joint training and exercises that include participants from all safety and security agencies—police, fire, emergency medical, emergency management, and private-sector response teams. To control costs, some valuable training can be provided electronically.
An effective public order strategy should include a tiered approach to crowd management. Unless necessary, police and security officials should avoid adversarial approaches to spectators, demonstrators, and celebrants, which often causes situations to escalate. Rather, stewards and law enforcement personnel should take a friendly and cooperative approach to fans while remaining vigilant for early signs of trouble.
The safety and security strategy for a major sporting event must be based on a balanced approach that includes prevention, intervention, and enforcement. Developing robust prevention and preparedness capabilities at official venues will significantly reduce the chances of criminality or disruption.
You can see from the list of ingredients for sporting event security that planning is a key component to making security seamless. If your organization is planning a large event and need professional security, give us a call. We will share our professional expertise to make your event a success!