Planning security for a major event requires a customised approach that considers effective security measures against a realistic assessment of the likely threats to the event.
It is the responsibility of the event management process to:
- identify risks
- prioritise which areas of risk can be accepted
- identify those that need to be mitigated
- decide who will be responsible for the mitigation of these risks.
While responsibility for threat assessment and security planning lies with organisers and venues, two key partners must also be informed and involved:
- the Police
- local authorities.
The level of involvement of the Police and local authorities with the event, and the level of their responsibilities, will depend on the event’s scale and type. As a minimum, they should be made aware of your event, its location and the dates.
As the organiser you have a duty of care to spectators, athletes, officials and staff to put in place measures and plans to deliver event security to the most appropriate level.
Threats and risk assessment
Threats and security issues come from many directions. The nature and size of your event will determine which areas will present the greatest risk. Only you, the organiser, along with experts in this area, will be able to establish the priorities across all of the key event areas, which vary from event to event but include:
Developing the security plan
The event organiser should appoint a security coordinator who will ultimately be responsible for the security plan. It is advisable to appoint a professional security consultant to assist in developing your security plan. it is essential that the security plan is not formed in isolation.
Under the clear direction of the event manager, the plan must be developed in conjunction with the event planning process and take into account the identified risks and minimum requirements for the event.
Give your event a reality check for security requirements based on budgetary constraints.
Assessing the likely risks is only the first step in successful event security planning. Developing and implementing basic security plan components – entry criteria and access control, critical area protection, and event-specific issues – to meet these threats is the next step.
The security plan has a number of core components.