When events are allowed under a permit process it is necessary to complete a thorough review of the event, including the use of the local facilities and potentially the contribution of resources.
The permit process applies in a universal or non-discriminatory way, so that all potential sponsors that meet the essential criteria are equally welcome. If the community contributes resources then it should be handled as equitably as possible..
For example, if a long standing parade is held each year to commemorate the founding of a community, and the local municipality contributes resources like police and traffic control, then other groups may also be given consideration. If the butterfly club would like a parade, they should be given the same consideration as other groups that may have a greater ethnic or religious heritage in the community.
When new or fresh events are planned they require more careful analysis and review, including contingency planning if things do not go as planned.
There have been a number of events held over the years, where the local community was left with damaged facilities or broken promises of promoters. If a promoter represents greater financial risk or risk to facilities, greater security or a performance bond may be required.
The first step in evaluating special events is to consider the ultimate responsible party, and make sure that party has an effective risk management plan in place to address the risks associated with the events.
It is very common for event planners to desire the “wow” factor in events, to assure interest and success with these events. Yet the desire for something new or innovative cannot compromise the safety of those who participate in the events. Every year there are events that result in tragedy, which may have been avoided if life safety was the highest priority and if a detailed risk management plan had been put into place for the event.
A tragic example happened a few years ago when a participant was seriously njured during a demolition derby at a county fair. The county did not require equipment pre-check when mechanized demonstrations occurred. If a pre-check had been required, then a loose strut on one of the trucks in the derby would have been discovered, avoiding serious injury.
Make life safety the top priority at your special events.