Special events by their very nature invite large groups into designated areas, which require that their basic needs be met.
Based upon the estimated crowd, portable toilets or rest rooms should be conveniently located. The same is true with refuse containers. They not only need to be conveniently located, but also regularly serviced to make sure that they are not over taxed or filled beyond capacity.
After the event is over the site of the event should be restored to the same condition as was evident, prior to the event. Similar to good hiking and camping protocols, if things are brought in by the planner or spectators, then they should be taken out again. The positive influence of a well-run event lingers well after, but the debris or other reminders should be long gone as the site of the event is restored to the original condition.
All events require designated areas where it is safe to watch or participate in the event. One of the major concerns of outdoor event planners is how to keep individuals in the safe areas, and not overrun areas that may not be as safe or may violate the personal property of others.
For example, most parades that go through communities have floats or others in the parade throw candy or other prizes into the crowd. This may cause young children to move under barriers and seek a better spot to catch the candy, and thus move them into an unsafe place where they could be hurt or injured. A simple solution is to reduce the throwing distance by not permitting those on floats or other displays to throw candy or prizes. Instead if they would like to give candy or prizes to children or others in the crowd, require them to have trailing individuals walk along the safe zone and hand or toss the candy or prizes to those in the crowd.
Every event will have similar potential for the spectators to be invited or unwittingly move into unsafe areas. Careful thought and consideration should be given to assure that those that are involved in the event, either as participants or spectators should stay in safe areas. If fireworks are displayed, the discharge should stop if the crowd moves into the drop zone of the fireworks.
All events require careful planning on how participants and spectators will get into the event, and when it is over how they will leave. Consideration should be given to the amount of required parking, the distance that will need to be traveled from parking areas to the event. Is it necessary to offer shuttle services or a drop zone for spectators or participants?
Most individuals will also look for the shortest way to the event, even if they face greater personal risk crossing busy streets or jay walking. Traffic control and warning devises are essential to assure safe ingress.
When an event is over, many will not be as careful about following predesignated routes. Temporary barriers or control devices may be disregarded. Many events require participation of local law enforcement to assure traffic control and that the designated routes are followed upon completion of the event.
Law enforcement is also an excellent deterrence to potential civil disobedience that may occur after major concerts or sporting events.
Effective risk management planning starts with identification of the hazards that may be inherit to the event. Hazard identification is a careful assessment of the known risks and potential risks that may arise from the activities’ of the event.
For example if the event is a live stage performance at an outdoor location, the hazards may arise from the use of temporary structures, such as stages and related equipment, There may also be hazards related to the use of power, lighting systems or sound equipment. Are spectators or participants allowed to cross areas with electrical lines or guide wires? Is the sound system adequate for the venue or will spectators need to crowd too closely to the stage to hear the performance? How strong is the support for these systems, especially if a wind or other weather event arises?
These details need to be identified and addressed in the risk management and safety plan for the event. At times the various stakeholders involved in the event may need to meet and discuss specific planning details and the potential hazards that may be evident. This enriches the process through the collective resources of many stakeholders.