One of the problems of putting on large scale sporting events, exhibitions, or festivals is controlling the number of people. While dealing with 100-200 people may seem a relatively straight forward task, imagine trying to control tens of thousands of people? That’s a whole new different ball game! Glastonbury for example is the world’s largest greenfield festival and this year saw a staggering 175,000 people in attendance. So how do you go about managing crowds of this size? Let’s take a closer look….
Speed up the entrance process
The last thing you want when large crowds are entering an event is a bottleneck. It’s important to have a well rehearsed process in place so that people can pass through quickly. Ensure there are plenty of entrances where attendees can show their ticket and pass through with the minimum amount of fuss. The need to keep security simple but effective is highly important so if you are bag checking and scanning, ensure security personnel are well rehearsed in the process. Prior planning and preparation is crucial.
Ensure easy crowd flow and dispersal
So, once the crowd has passed through the entrance process, it’s advisable to consider how they are going to get to the event itself. Glastonbury for example has around 1,100 acres with perimeter fencing spanning some 8 miles, so there needs to be a way of moving crowds safely to where they should be. One way is to ensure that there’s an abundance of clear signage detailing the direction people need to take. Try to avoid cross flow and ensure that the movement area is also wide enough to avoid bottle necks. In addition make sure the area is free from hazards eg. uneven or dangerous ground or if it’s an indoor venue, ensure doors remain open.
Appear friendly and helpful
Once the festival is underway, ensure first of all that you have sufficient security staff. While often the notion of ratios is far too generic, the right amount of security will ensure that things run smoothly. Take into consideration things like crowd demographics, venue size, experience of staff, and relevant responsibilities to ensure sufficient numbers. However more importantly is that security staff appear helpful and pleasant. Act as a friendly face rather than one in authority. This way people will respond better to what you’re saying and if you need them to walk the long way round, they’re more likely to do so.
If you’re looking to plan an event whatever the size and are concerned about crowd control and security in general, then come and talk to MA Security. We’ve successfully managed security for some of the largest festivals in Melbourne, so give us a call today on 1300 020 406 to see just how we can help.