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This is not a time to stick our heads in the sand and pretend it won’t happen. When planning an event, no matter how large, we must budget and strategically plan event security; identify risks and put measures in place to minimize risks. Any event that will draw a large crowd could potentially become the target of a terrorist group. Planning an event’s security should not detract from the event, but add to the safety and peace of mind of those participating.

To be honest, since 9-11 with the Global War on Terrorism in full-swing and the inability of event organizers or even Homeland Security to predict where and when the next terrorist act will take place, we must plan every event as if an attack is imminent. Michiel Middendorf, the GM for The World Forum, one of the largest event organizers in the world, stated recently, “It is very important that everyone in the event industry openly and honestly discusses such subjects as terrorist threats and security breaches.”

Risk Management

To prevent risk, we must first identify those possible risks. Event planners must ask, what can happen? Then, they must realistically explore the dangers. Event organizers should weigh the possible threats and identify the vulnerabilities, not understate the threats and think because nothing has happened during past events, nothing will happen at this one. The key to a successful event is to minimize threats before the event and include possible reactions into the planning if something does occur.

The best way to minimize any threats is to manage the risk by installing and instilling event security measures such as, controlled entry (if possible, for most sales events or even job fairs the entrance is open to the public and a little more difficult to control; however, the appearance of control is often all that is needed), roving guards (inside and outside), background checks on temporary employees, train everyone on the proper reaction to anything out of the ordinary or hostile action (although employees will still be shocked initially by any unplanned action, after recovery they will remember what their response should be), and training should highlight event security and the employee’s responsibility to assist emergency responders.

Planning Event Security

Whatever plan is worked out, everyone involved should be aware of the plan, from the event organizers to the ushers and ticket takers.

Although the space available and the number of guests expected may dictate how big of a buffer zone is needed from the parking area and other traffic, a minimum 100 feet, where possible, is recommended. Therefore, you should start the plan from there and scale back if necessary.

Event security must include a roving patrol and stationary CCTV to keep an “eye” on areas that will be mostly vacant during the event itself. Ticket takers and ushers could, in fact, be trained, unarmed security personnel if your budget dictates. Additionally, the size of the expected crowd will determine if an emergency response team will be required onsite and if an ambulance is necessary. Even when one is not required, an onsite ambulance and first aid station are advisable.

The better you plan for your event security, the better chance of success for the overall event.

Western Eagle Security – We Can Provide Everything You Need for Event Security

When you are planning an event, we can send someone to make an initial assessment of your event security and what else may be required. Simply call Western Eagle Security, (281) 496-6800 or visit our website and complete the convenient contact form and we will provide a comprehensive assessment of your event and what it will cost. We will determine what additional measures should be taken, such as added cameras, if off-site parking is advisable given the threat, and how many additional security personnel may be required to make the most of your security dollars to protect your guests and resources.

Or, you may wish to send us an email:,

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