Managing crowds can be a daunting task for event planners. Crowds can invite a slew of issues ranging from congestion and high foot traffic to terrorism and organized crime. If the right crowd control and security measures are in place, the risk of these issues are significantly decreased. Practical crowd control solutions require a combination of technology, experience, manpower, and planning. In this guide, we’ll review how to improve crowd control management and security in your next event in NYC.
1. Understand Your Event
The type of people coming to the event will directly affect how crowd control should be performed. Sporting events or live music with alcohol being served require more security and action than a business conference.
Amount of People
More attendees require more staffing, planning, and coordination with local municipalities.
Is the event in a hotel conference hall or a rented plot in a park? Understanding the space will give you a better idea of how crowds will move around.
Start & End
Events late at night could mean a rowdier crowd compared to ones in the morning or afternoon. Nighttime conditions also worsen visibility for guests and staff. Be prepared to handle how crowds react to the changes in the time of the day.
2. Create a Plan
Hiring a private security agency that is trained to deal with large crowds and disorderly conduct can save you the headache of having to do it yourself. Security guards can perform searches upon entry, patrol the event grounds, break up rowdy behavior and contact local law enforcement or EMTs in case of emergencies. Security agencies will also help you create a plan to ensure your event is flawlessly executed.
The number of people coming to your event will dictate the amount of staff needed. Large events will need guides to help move crowds along and give people directions. If alcohol is being served, experienced bartenders and needed to know when attendees need to get cut off.
Permitting, NYCPD and EMT
Different types of events require their own separate permits in addition to specific laws that need to be abided. Use the following resources to help you get an understanding of the planning that’s needed:
Contacting the police and EMT services can help with crowd control as they are well trained to deal with large crowds. To be safe, contact local authorities as soon as possible while the event is being planned.
Having an emergency plan can help you when issues come up. Be prepared to deal with the following:
- Changes in weather
- Medical emergencies
- Fires & flammable objects
- Mass emergency exiting
How you handle these situations often affects how the crowd responds. Planning helps you manage these situations, so you never lose control.
Rules may vary depending on the size and type of event. Regardless of what rules are chosen for your event, make sure they are enforced and have a plan if they are not enforced as specified.
Signage can prevent confusion and herd crowds to desired areas efficiently and effectively. Prepare clear signs for the following:
- Smoking areas
- Staff-only spaces
- Off-limits/Dangerous areas
- Highly desired spaces
3. Control the Entry & Perimeter
Controlling the entry and perimeter of your event can prevent a disaster from occurring. Work with your security agency on the following:
- Searching upon entry: Consider utilizing technology like metal detectors to prevent attendees from bringing objects that are dangerous to you and other guests.
- Guard dangerous areas: Places like rooftops and electricity rooms can pose a serious risk to attendees. Create a plan to find and prevent entry into these dangerous areas.
- Guard staff only and VIP areas: These areas are at high risk for theft and vandalism.
- Stay alert: Always be on the lookout for shady behavior as guests are entering the event. If the event is outside and fenced, watch for outside guests that may sneak in.
You’ve worked hard planning your event, don’t let faulty crowd control and security ruin it. Get in touch with a full-service team of security professionals today.
Get in touch with GISS International to discover how a tailored security plan can help you