How To Train Volunteers For Crowd Control Duty

When it comes to smaller events of festivals with a limited number of attendees, a security company can usually handle it in house using their own fully qualified and fully licensed personnel. Conversely with large scale sporting events or music festivals where those attending could be numbering in the tens of thousands, then for crowd control, a security company will usually have to call for back-up under the guise of volunteers.

Normally volunteers will have no specific security qualifications, but that doesn’t mean to say that they can’t be as effective, especially if you train them right. So how do you do this?

Allow yourself one to two clear days prior to the event, depending upon the amount of volunteers needed to train. However, before this, crowd control volunteers do need to fit a certain criteria. They need to have;

  • An outgoing personality
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills
  • A reasonable level of fitness
  • The means to quickly understand a situation and to take charge when called upon
  • The ability to be assertive when needs be but tactful at the same time

They also need to be able to

  • Follow direction easily.

One way to find out if they have what it takes is to give them a quick 2 or 3 minute interview. If they’re decisive in their replies, seem calm under pressure, and are able to give you examples of what they would do when faced with a particular situation, then you know you’ve at least found the right calibre of people.

The next step is general training –
Talk them through what they can and can’t do eg, searching policies etc; when they should call for back-up; and most importantly trainees need to know who should inform whom of what, when, and by what means. Also run through health and safety including evacuation procedures and (if necessary) where the nearest fire fighting equipment is located. In addition if they’ve been asked to wear clothing such as hi-vis vests or organisational uniforms, then now’s the time for them to familiarise themselves with it.

Role specific training
Finally those who need to use specific devices such as radios and contraband scanners should have further role specific training. When it comes to radios make sure that they understand radio protocols and that procedures are followed and if they’re using scanning devices to search for contraband, then they need to make sure that they know how to use them appropriately.

It may seem a lot of hassle but the better the training the more smooth the event is going to run because everyone knows exactly what they’re doing.

If you’re looking to stage an event and would like to outsource the security part of your operation then come and talk to MA Services Group. We’ve had the pleasure of heading the security for some of the largest events in Melbourne so why not give us a call on 03 9994 4107 and let us show you how we can help.

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