The fascinating world of event security: Ensuring fan safety during an age of uncertainty

By James A. DeMeo, M.S., adjunct instructor of event security at Tulane University and founder, president and CEO of USESC

The tragedy coming out of the Las Vegas-Mandalay Bay mass shootings, a black swan event has event security leaders rethinking the playbook for properly safeguarding today’s confined spaces.

The concept of an aerial assault prior to the event was unfathomable. Security leaders entrusted with duty of care responsibilities have to literally go back to the drawing board on how best to prevent a copycat incident from occurring.The loss of lives was without question catastrophic. The question now begs: Where do we go from here?

Security leaders can make a monumental impact in the vertical by sharing best practices and lessons learned with their industry peers. Confined space protection refers to densely populated areas where people, in the case of Las Vegas, music fans congregated to watch a particular performance.

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The Country music singer Jason Aldean, his first reaction to the shooting was that perhaps there were some speaker, sound system issues. His security team instructed him to leave the stage as the tragedy unfolded. Members of Aldean's crew hid underneath the stage in an effort to shelter in place from the fusillade of bullets coming from the shooter who was situated on the 32 floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino.

When we look back to Manchester Arena and the Paris Soccer stadium bombing, we see the importance of event staff maintaining situational awareness, and having the ability to lead patrons to safety during times of crises. Proactive risk mitigation event staff training is a key component in best confronting these types of challenges.

The integration of technology, physical security screening measures, biometrics, LPR-licence plate readers, effective communications between first responders and event staff, crowd control, crowd dynamics, understanding patron demographics, along with responsible social media monitoring can play a monumental role in helping to prevent/reduce the loss of life concerning the proper safeguarding of future events.

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By |2019-04-10T06:10:28+00:00April 10th, 2019|News|Comments Off on The fascinating world of event security: Ensuring fan safety during an age of uncertainty

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