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Safety & Security for
Meetings & Events 

Chapter 4
Emergency Action Plan


 

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Best practices for operations and Communications event plans that consider meetings venue and event staff at all levels

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Chapters


 

4

EMERGENCY ACTION PLAN

Learn how to have an emergency action plan in place from everything from the handling of suspicious package to an infrastructure failure. This chapter will teach you how to create an incident response plan, how to manage the media, develop pre-planning strategies

 


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    Emergency Action Plan Blogs

    4 - Emergency Action Plan
    Best practices for operations and Communications event plans that consider meetings venue and event staff at all levels
    4 - Emergency Action Plan
    Creating a Emergency Action Plan (EAP) for your Event Safety and Security is Crucial.

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    EMERGENCY ACTION PLANNING
    AND CRISIS MANAGEMENT

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop and continually (for each event annually) revise a written Emergency Action Plan (EAP). Some also refer to this as an Emergency Operations Plan (EOP), Incident Action Plan (IAP).

    • Collaboration and coordination is key. Develop in conjunction with all involved parties; Public Safety agencies should be responsible for many sections and will frequently take the lead (these will be so noted).
    • The EAP should include specific measures to cope with and respond to all potential incidents within the event area
    • The EAP is a separate document from the Event Day(s) Plan but will serve as an appendix

     

    Objectives:

    • Being able to respond effectively to any incident requires pre-planning, anticipation, coordination, and training.
    • To reduce legal liability.

     

    Implementation:

    The size and complexity of the written EAP will be driven by the RTV Assessment, size and type of the event, number of attendees, history of prior events, etc. The EAP may also incorporate several smaller events with a separate section for each specific type of event as applicable.

     

    The local and state agencies (who will be responding to incidents) along with the FBI and DHS Protective Security Advisors (PSA) are a tremendous resource. Every FBI Office has a Special Events Coordinator who can be of assistance.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This should occur regardless of the size of event as you have the duty of care for patrons and staff. Larger events will require more extensive planning versus smaller events.

     

    This should be developed from your perspective, where possible in collaboration between: Event Organizer, Venue, Lodging, Transportation, Contractors and Public Safety.

     

    Many of the items will be handled by public safety, but there needs to be collaboration, coordination, and recognition of their roles and responsibilities.

    1. Best Practice:

    The EAP should address all event day(s) and load in day threats, load out, and potential emergencies.

    • Minimize injury and loss of life
    • Establish effective response
    • Incident stabilization
    • Protection of property and the environment
    • Minimize economic impact

     

    Objectives:

    • Must be all encompassing, as complete planning will afford for better preparation and training.
    • Will also assist in brand protection and reduce legal liability.

     

    Implementation:

    GUIDES

    Compliance regulations, laws and recommendations for review:

    • Blood Borne Pathogens (OSHA)
    • EAP 29 CFR1910.38
    • FBI Law Enforcement Crisis Management Handbook
    • Fire Prevention Plan 29 CFR 1910.39 e. First Aid 29 CFR 1910.151
    • MGT-404 Sport and Special Event Incident Management
    • AWR-167 Sport Event Risk Management
    • NFPA 1600
    • NIMS 100-800
    • State Fire Codes
    • State health department codes regarding food handling and emergency medical services
    • Local building codes/structural regulations for temporary structures and stages

    ICS forms are also useful.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    For international events, INTERPOL offers fact sheets and guides that may be relevant, depending on the event destination: https://www.interpol.int/ en/News-and-media/Publications2/Guides-manuals2

    1. Best Practice:

    Specify persons to be notified and in the proper order of notification. Ensure the notification list remains current by updating annually and/or when contact changes occur.

     

    Objectives:

    Ensure accuracy and that the appropriate individuals get notified.

     

    Implementation:

    Keep hard copy and electronic copy.

     

    Coordinate with local contacts to ensure that all concerned to the best of your ability (and documented) are involved in the planning process.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    It will depend upon the type of event and location and could involve: event, venue, lodging, transportation and public safety.

    1. Best Practice:

    Create a plan for staffing according to the particular event and the assessed risks/threats.

     

    Objectives:

    Roles, responsibilities and sufficient resources.

     

    Implementation:

    Use this to determine who will take charge of the specific incident.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This may be organization dependent.

    1. Best Practice:

    Ensure plans are protected from unauthorized disclosure.

     

    Objectives:

    Not all parts of the plan should be open to everyone, especially tactical plans.

     

    Implementation:

    Treat as law enforcement sensitive, need to know.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Not all the parts from public safety will be shared with you or your staff, only those in which you have a need to know, but you do need to know they have a plan for those components.

    1. Best Practice:

    Conduct at least an annual exercise on the Plan and include updated information from previous exercises.

     

    Objectives:

    Staff and partner preparation.

     

    Implementation:

    Include all parties to test the Plan. Discuss roles and responsibilities.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    If you have a reoccurring event.

     

    May pick specific components to exercise.

    1. Best Practice:

    Establish an Executive Safety and Security Committee (ESSC) comprised of leader or their designees from law enforcement (local, state and federal), fire department, medical, health service and emergency management, as well as all appropriate venue staff.

     

    Objectives:

    Provides organization, reduces confusion and establishes accountability while getting the most input.

     

    Implementation:

    This can be scaled based upon the size of the municipality, geography, history and local environment.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is for large events with security/safety concerns, but many of these components could be relevant to your event of any size.

    1. Best Practice:

    Have ESSC establish Specialized Management Coordination Components (SMCC) through the committee process.

     

    Objectives:

    Assigns responsibility with expertise and accountability.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is for large events with security/safety concerns. For smaller events a single person may address all these components through coordination and collaboration.

    1. Best Practice:

    Appoint a lead individual (or agency/organization, if applicable) for each SMCC to identify overall responsibility and the setup of each component. Develop a written component for the plan. The following are recommended SMCCs:

     

    EMERGENCY PLANNING STRUCTURE

    • Background Screening/Credentialing/Accreditation
    • Blueprints, Maps, Diagrams, CAD/BIM, GIS
    • Command and Control
    • Communications
    • EOD/WMD/CBRN/ Bomb Dogs
    • Intelligence/Investigations
    • Jurisdictional Roles and Responsibilities
    • NIMS/ICS
    • Public Information/ Media Relations
    • Rapid Investigative Response/Tactical Response
    • Traffic Control
    • Transpiration
    • Lodging
    • Unified Joint Operations Center
    • Dignitary Protection
    • Emergency Management
    • Parking/Tailgating Areas

     

    INCIDENT RESPONSE PLANS

    • Active Shooter
    • Adverse Weather
    • Aviation Accident/ Incident
    • Bomb Threat/Suspicious Package/Bombing
    • Cyber Intrusion/Attack
    • Demonstrations/Civil Disturbance/Riots
    • Earthquake (if applicable)
    • EMS/Medical
    • Evacuation/Sheltering/ Reunification
    • Fatality(s)
    • Fire and Rescue
    • Hazardous Materials Release
    • Infrastructure Failure
    • Marine (if applicable)
    • Mass Casualty
    • Public Transportation Incidents
    • Structural Collapse
    • Terrorism
    • Weapons of Mass Destruction
    • Vehicle used as a Weapon

     

    Objectives:

    • Comprehensive planning.
    • Structure, planning, command and control.
    • All-hazard planning.

     

    Implementation:

    The same individual will probably be responsible for any like components between Emergency Planning Structure and Incident Response Plans.

     

    These should be lead and developed by Public Safety personnel (law enforcement, fire department, EMS and emergency management) and key individuals from the venue/event.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    These are typical areas. While all may not apply to every event, most would to some degree, depending on event size and security/ safety concerns.

    1. Best Practice:

    The EAP serves as a guide/plan-providing direction, information, management, coordination, roles and responsibilities.

     

    Objectives:

    This provides an organized structure and response procedures should an emergency/critical incident occur.

     

    Implementation:

    Should be consistent with NIMS/ICS.

     

    Also for use in contractual documents with event service providers.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    The EAP should reflect the size and scope of the particular event and scaled accordingly.

    1. Best Practice:

    Provide response procedures to protect people and property during and after an incident.

     

    Objectives:

    Reduce event/venue liability.

    1. Best Practice:

    Provide a structure for coordination between event/venue/transportation personnel and government authorities to promote an effective response and resolution.

     

    Objectives:

    Cooperation and collaboration.

     

    Implementation:

    This will also serve as a guide for exercises.

    1. Best Practice:

    Designate leaders to exercise authority and provide direction within the chain of command by identifying specific responsibilities.

     

    Objectives:

    • One of the most important principles of effective inter-organizational success is unity of effort with clear lines of command and control.
    • A pre-defined chain of command is important during crisis situations.

     

    Implementation:

    Leadership is a VERY important component as is coordination and team effort.

     

    For active venues, conduct monthly review sessions with leadership team to address any questions or concerns.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    The appropriate individual should be designated as the Incident Commander (IC) for each type of incident. See NIMS/ICS Identify the Incident Commander for any type of incident. Generally, it is an agency/organization head or designee (i.e. Police Chief, Fire Chief, etc.), or the senior member of the venue/lodging or transportation security team.

    1. Best Practice:

    Hold pre-event meetings with decision makers to sort out and understand jurisdictional roles and responsibilities of the various public agencies and the venue/ lodging management team decision makers. These should be documented.

     

    Objectives:

    • Clear lines of roles and responsibilities.
    • Eliminates confusion during an incident.

     

    Implementation:

    This should occur regardless of venue size.

     

    At least annually, have major planning meetings with all parties to address/ modify the plans to meet the needs of the venue/ event.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Again this is event dependent, size and security/safety concerns will dictate.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop an Operations/ Communications Plan that includes options and alternative methods to communicate at all levels from the Operations Center to the venue and public safety operations.

     

    Objectives:

    Communication is extremely important. Pre-planning and redundancy are essential. Interagency communications is essential during a crisis and should be a high priority.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is clearly scalable based on the event, environment and potential incident.

    1. Best Practice:

    Plan for multiple communication platforms with sufficient redundancy to get timely and accurate information to those who need it when they need it.

     

    Objectives:

    Redundancy.

     

    Implementation:

    Consider public safety communication capabilities, public and commercial radios, landlines, cellular, ham radios, video boards, broadcast media, social media, text and PA systems.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Test Communications Plan/equipment in a working environment to ensure the equipment is working properly before the event.

    • Install signal enhancement (repeaters) to ensure venue-wide coverage as necessary for all communications (radio, cellular, data)

     

    Objectives:

    Reliability of communication capability overall and in a high-noise environment.

     

    Implementation:

    This should be performed prior to EACH event.

     

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Do not rely upon any single method/system of communicating for operational or emergency communications.

    • With technology advances, don’t forget the old reliable capabilities that have proven tried and true, such as ham radios and their operators
    • Also, maintain landline phone capability

     

    Objectives:

    Technology dependency and reliability.

     

    Implementation:

    Always have a back-up even if it is dispatching a person to relay information.

     

    For large scale events consider bringing in cellular providers to beef up the existing cellular infrastructure in the area of the venue/lodging to accommodate large crowd use of cellular resources. Request priority routing for public safety.

     

    Event organizers should consider the Government Emergency Telecommunications Service (GETS) and/or Wireless Priority Service (WPS) program offered through the federal government to get priority phone service during an emergency.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Radios and smartphones are the most used for redundancy.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Have megaphones as a backup for crowd control and emergency communications.

    • Also use first responder equipment PAs for emergency communications

     

    Objectives:

    Be prepared for the unexpected.

     

    Implementation:

    Pre-stage megaphones at ingress and egress points around the venue.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is the most prevalent tool used.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop audio and video scripts for all types of incidents with specific emergency announcement broadcasts.

    • New megaphones allow for pre-recording of various incident scripts

     

    Objectives:

    Avoids confusion during an incident.

     

    Implementation:

    Consider all forms of media. Scripts should be preprogrammed in to the devices to save critical time.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Written instructions should be in place to address incoming threats, whether telephonic or via any other medium. All incoming threats should be properly recorded and preserved.

     

    Objectives:

    Essential to initiate an investigation and emergency response. Provides documentation for analysis, investigations, lessons learned and in the event of litigation.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    For all events.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Establish process to get information on reported threats directed at adjacent facilities (buildings, train or subway stations, businesses, fuel storage, factories, etc.) to the Operations Center.

    • Specify persons to be notified and the order of notification
    • Broadest POSSIBLE dissemination should be made to the Unified Command
    • Review and test before each event to ensure contact numbers are correct

     

    Objectives:

    • Situational awareness.
    • Eliminate surprises.
    • Avoid confusion.

     

    Implementation:

    Primarily handled by Public Safety with venue operations contributions.

     

    Environmental surroundings, including adjacent facilities and nearby critical infrastructure, have the potential to impact the venue, participants and spectators so it is imperative to have awareness and monitor these areas.

     

    Keep staff informed. Ensure that the notification list remains current by updating for every event.

    1. Best Practice:

    Designate and authorize the Public Information Officer (PIO) to respond to the media and general public in the event of an incident so as to establish a single authorized, authoritative voice.

    • For large events consider establishing a Joint Information Center (JIC) to:
    • Coordinate messaging among Event Operations and all jurisdictions
    • Share news releases, questions and situational awareness
    • Share information and breaking news with media and the public through news releases, interviews and social media
    • Coordinate social media messaging
    • Speak with a single voice and avoid confusion

     

    Objectives:

    Deciding who will handle media/information reduces what will be a very chaotic environment during an incident/crisis.

     

    Implementation:

    Try to use the most experienced individual, regardless of agency/organization who will be available on-site during the event who can speak authoritatively.

     

    This may require a collaborative effort since different organizations may have different rules and goals; consider a two-person team approach (one public and one private).

     

    The incident may dictate who will handle primary media contact or take the lead.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is dependent on both event and incident size.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop policies and procedures to advise the media and general public of the situation to defuse rumors and panic.

    • Set up a media briefing area away from the Command Center and crisis area to deliver media briefings

     

    Objectives:

    Avoid confusion and the appearance of un-informed chaotic reporting.

     

    Implementation:

    This should be a team effort.

     

    May already be addressed in venue/agency’s larger Information Management Plan.

     

    Keep media briefing away from the Command Center and crisis area to avoid congestion and prevent media from accidentally getting access to something or someone they should not.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop a procedure for reuniting family members in the event of an incident and communicating this information.

     

    Objectives:

    • Easy family re-unification.
    • Reduce patron and family stress.
    1. Best Practice:

    Emergency Management is the planning to reduce vulnerabilities to develop resiliency to cope with disasters. It does not avert or eliminate threats; instead it focuses on creating plans to decrease the impact of an incident. Failure to create a plan could lead to deaths, damaged assets and lost revenue.

    • Some large venues today have their own Emergency Management Director

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention and preparation.

     

    Implementation:

    All states, counties, and major cities have EM units that support events with FEMA resources.

     

    In some states the state DHS fills this role.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This can be a great resource for you, if you are planning a large event.

    1. Best Practice:

    VIPs/dignitaries require coordination between law enforcement and event operations due to their celebrity status and possible protective detail (often armed). This includes protection, escort and transportation.

    • Must ensure that event/ venue security personnel and law enforcement know who is armed

     

    Objectives:

    Pre-plan as a possible disruption.

     

    Implementation:

    If this is a requirement for the event, designate a coordinator.

     

    If any pre-broadcast of VIP attendance, this may require extra precautions should be taken, based upon an intelligence assessment.

     

    Traffic escorts can also be problematic.

     

    Sometimes these VIPs are targets of protestors.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Regardless of event size.

    1. Best Practice:

    Each venue or event should have a designated Operations Center that serves as the control center for the event.

    • The Operations Center will coordinate information and resource deployment among event operations, local, regional, state and federal partners.
    • Goals:
      • Common operating picture, provide timely and accurate situational awareness for emergency operations
      • Platform for effective multi-jurisdictional decision making
      • Coordination between Public Safety and venue operations
      • Provide timely and effective incident response and necessary resources
      • Coordinate intelligence and investigations
      • Coordinate facility issues
      • Coordinate recovery

     

    Objectives:

    • Particularly important to centralize communications when lacking interagency communications. Easier to keep everyone informed and on the same page.
    • Reduces time to react and respond. Allows for easier and better coordinated conferencing.
    • Allows for centralized resource management and consistent communications.

     

    Implementation:

    Make-up of the Operations Center depends on the scope of the events and the number of different jurisdictions.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Depending upon the event/ venue this could be a small work room with a phone or a larger room with monitors, radios, computers, etc. that is scalable based upon your event.

     

    It should serve as your hub of control, information fusion and decision making.

     

    Multi-venue events can utilize one central connected operations center with dispatch centers located at larger satellite venues. 

    1. Best Practice:

    Venue Blueprints/Computer Aided Drawing (CAD) of buildings/facilities, aerial maps, utilities, photographs and diagrams for planning, implementation strategies, and response should be located in or immediately accessible in the Operations Center.

     

    Location directory/maps of:

    • All ingress and egress points
    • Electrical boxes and transformers
    • Emergency shelter areas
    • Emergency vehicle staging areas
    • Evacuation assembly points
    • Hazardous material storage
    • Life safety equipment (first aid, AEDs, fire control panel, fire alarm manual pull stations)
    • Rail lines
    • Transportation hubs
    • Utilities locations (and shut-offs)

     

    Objectives:

    It is too late to try and collect/find these items during a crisis and it could mean the difference between life and death.

     

    Implementation:

    There are various Crisis Management Systems on the market that contain modules to enter/maintain/recall these for use and transmission to public safety units.

     

    If digital they can be projected on screens and sent to smartphones.

     

    Secure a copy of emergency contact information and critical documents (digital or hard copy) at offsite Command Center/EOC.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    At least your venue contact should have ready access to this.

    1. Best Practice:

    Everything should be logged and documented.

     

    Objectives:

    Litigation protection.

     

    Implementation:

    Conduct after-action review for lessons learned and modify plan accordingly.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is important for legal purposes and future planning.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop a detailed plan for vehicular flow into and out of the venue property, and around the event area. The staging and entry/exit of responding emergency vehicles should be included.

     

    Objectives:

    Impact on local community.

     

    Implementation:

    This requires close collaboration with local, county, and/or state law enforcement and t traffic planners from Department of Transportation (DOT).

     

    Coordinate with vendor(s) who manage parking and traffic operations.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This important for larger events.

     

    When applicable, make sure that local first responders have logged the entry as a geo-fixed for ingress/egress routes for dispatch. Routing of emergency vehicles should be done in conjunction with local responding agencies working to avoid heavy pedestrian crowd flow and being mindful of the access to area facilities.

    1. Best Practice:

    Manage the patron ingress and egress of vehicles to the venue property, including vendors.

     

    Objectives:

    Traffic/parking is one of the top issues with patrons.

     

    Implementation:

    Particular attention to this helps with patron satisfaction, as traffic and parking issues are frustrating to patrons.

     

    Effective planning and deployment can serve to mitigate this.

    1. Best Practice:

    The use and deployment of bomb dogs requires experts. The SMEs must be consulted for the event and develop a plan for dealing with and responding to incidents involving:

    • Bomb threats
    • Bomb/explosives search/ screening
    • Bombing/explosion
    • Suspicious packages/items –render safe
    • WMD (chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear)

     

    Objectives:

    Anticipate and plan for response.

     

    Implementation:

    Major cities/counties in the U.S. have these SMEs on staff; others rely upon the FBI, BATF, and the military for support. Establish a Threat Assessment Team to evaluate and advise on these type incidents; FBI will assist. Form a relationship with local/state canine assets. Allow them to train at the venue so that they can become familiar with the venue layout and the operation.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    For large high-profile events or those with high risk.

    1. Best Practice:

    The EAP needs to include response modules/plans for dealing with each area below, designating the onsite/response Incident Commander for each.

     

    Objectives:

    Pre-planned response capability.

     

    Implementation:

    Time is critical if an incident occurs; having a plan in place reduces time to respond.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This will be scaled based upon the threat and size of the event. While overall responsibility for coordination will rest with the event producer, incident response will rest with the appropriate public safety agency.

    1. Best Practice:

    Plans should address the fire response at the venue. Consider staging staff and equipment. Staff should understand the various incident plans and be familiar with the venue.

     

    Objectives:

    Pre-planned response capability.

     

    Implementation:

    Need to know the location of water supply hook-ups and utility shut-offs.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This will be scaled based upon the threat and size of the event.

    1. Best Practice:

    Due to the nature of the event, and patron demographics, additional medical resources may be required on site. Consider staging staff and equipment. Staff should understand the various incident plans and be familiar with the venue.

     

    Objectives:

    Pre-planned response capability.

     

    Implementation:

    Prepositioned supplies and equipment can expedite care.

     

    Check to see if the venue has AEDs in public areas. Some hotels/venues do not due to corporate policy, so you may need to bring your own.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This will be scaled based upon the threat, demographic and size of the event.

    1. Best Practice:

    Be alert for and coordinate for both preventive measures and response capabilities in anticipation of a terrorist attack. Adopt the DHS “See Something, Say Something” program or similar programs that engage event staff, patrons, talent and the public.

     

    Objectives:

    • Pre-planned response capability.
    • Court decisions have held that terrorism is a foreseeable act.
    • Advertise Hot Line number, text or other social media platforms to report information.

     

    Implementation:

    The FBI can assist in planning for terrorism and can provide intelligence of potential threats to the venue/event.

     

    The threat environment is evolving, and new threats of terrorism are being used by organized groups as well as lone wolves or violent extremists.

     

    Mass gathering events have become a recent target.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This will be scaled based upon the threat, nature and size of the event.

    1. Best Practice:

    The Severe Weather Plan should provide guidance, establish procedures and assign responsibilities in severe weather situations which should include evacuation/shelter-in-place/ relocation.

    • Plan should consider the following:
      • Lightning
      • High wind to include a tornado
      • Heavy rain/hail or flooding
      • Snow or sleet
      • Heat stress
      • Severe cold or hypothermia
    • Review during briefings as applicable to the event
    • Practice and test staff for evacuation/shelter-inplace/relocation plans at least twice during a season (year)
    • Test communications systems
    • Develop triggers for postponing, suspending and cancelling events so everyone knows the criteria

     

    Objectives:

    • Severe thunderstorms, hail, high wind, tornados, lightning, flooding snow, ice storms, extreme heat or cold and other adverse weather conditions can endanger life, destroy property and hinder operations.
    • Minimizing injuries and property damage are top priorities.

     

    Implementation:

    Establish liaison with the National Weather Service, as they can assist in plan development.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is regardless of event size, with a greater concentration for outdoor events.

     

    Assess potential inclement weather threats based on geographic area and timeframe of the event. 

    1. Best Practice:

    When a severe weather warning, tornado watch or warning or flood warning is issued, then evacuation/ shelter-in-place/relocation plan should be implemented, as appropriate.

    • Monitor weather closely for the two weeks before the event. If heavy snow and extremely cold or hot weather is predicted, activate the Severe Weather Plan and consider cancellation

     

    Objectives:

    Protect life and property.

     

    Implementation:

    This will require extensive communications capabilities.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    The planning for evacuation/shelter-in-place/relocation should be discussed. Identify the individual who will make the decision with partner(s) input.

     

    Objectives:

    Clarity

     

    Implementation:

    Identify by name.

    1. Best Practice:

    Plan for temperature extremes of hot and cold; include medical response component.

     

    Implementation:

    EMS can assist with planning.

    1. Best Practice:

    Heat Stress

    • For heat stress, add fluid stations as replenishment needs will increase
    • Make available an increase of ice to medical stations
    • As a precaution, have additional ambulances standing by
    • Identify areas where attendees can find relief from heat (such as air-conditioned buses). Consider using cooling stations such as AC tents/vehicles

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection

    1. Best Practice:

    Severe Cold, Hypothermia

    • Start communicating prior to the event the necessity to bring warm clothing
    • Identify areas where attendees can find relief from cold (such as buses)

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection.

    1. Best Practice:

    Assess necessary event infrastructure and ensure proper contacts for each are documented and accessible. Based on the event needs, some examples are:

    • Regional Airport Management
    • Transportation Department
    • Electrical Provider(s)
    • Natural Gas Provider(s)
    • Water/wastewater utility provider Venue telecommunications provider

     

    Objectives:

    Reduce response/recovery time.

     

    Implementation:

    Coordinate planning with community and venue management team.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Review history of these type issues in the area.

    1. Best Practice:

    Plan to have personnel from the water company on-call to respond as necessary.

    • Have a mitigation, response and recovery plan in place

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection.

     

    Implementation:

    Coordinate planning with community and venue management team.

    1. Best Practice:

    Plan to have personnel from the gas company on-call to respond as necessary.

    • Have a mitigation, response and recovery plan in place

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection.

     

    Implementation:

    Coordinate planning with company and venue management team.

     

    Also coordinate with fire department.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop and exercise a plan to deal with the complications from partial or total loss of power. Have a mitigation, response and recovery plan in place.

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection.

     

    Implementation:

    Electricians should work all events.

     

    Coordinate planning with company and venue management team.

     

    Outages are often associated with adverse weather.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Venues should have generators/backup power to support life safety, critical communications and emergency lighting.

    • Develop scripts for power outages that are broadcast via PA, video boards, and social media
    • Cellular communications should have some backup capability for emergency communication
    • Establish emergency contacts with local power utility company for coordination and rapid response if necessary

     

    Objectives:

    Response/protection.

     

    Implementation:

    Secured critical venue IT should be included in emergency standby systems powered by backup electricity.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop and exercise a venue/event plan with local law enforcement to deal with an active shooter during an event.

    • Observation and surveillance (a combination of human and video) in and around the venue is essential
    • Have response teams pre-positioned at designated locations

     

    Objectives:

    Preparedness.

     

    Implementation:

    FBI and DHS offer programs to assist in developing plans. Intelligence is important.

     

    Collaborate with all the first responder agencies in the area who would respond to avoid confusion.

    1. Best Practice:

    Plan should address an aviation accident, attack or nuisance to include UAV/ UASs that fly in or near the venue.

    • Establish policies and develop plans to deal with UAV/UASs both curiosity and adversarial

     

    Objectives:

    Crashes or attacks.

     

    Implementation:

    The FBI and the NTSB will always be in charge of the impact scene.

    • FBI: Scene and evidence collection
    • NTSB: Incident cause

    Coordinate with local law enforcement.

     

    With regard to UAV/UASs, review local statues to deal with banning their use/ presence. If statutes are not enforced, work with local governing agency to develop policies.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Plan should include liaison and contact information with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Particularly for outdoor events.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop and implement a security plan for computer and information systems hardware and software used for the event and coordinate the same with the venue and lodging. Include defined cybersecurity requirements for any hardware or software procured and installed for use at and by the management group/ venue/event or other locations with critical links to the venues.

    • Establish requirements for information access
    • Reset passwords on a regular basis
    • Immediately cancel access for terminated, employees, staff, etc.
    • Implement data loss prevention programs
    • Backup data daily (weekly at a minimum) to prevent loss or lockout

     

    Objectives:

    • Protect systems that have operations and control over various aspects of the event/venue.
    • Protect PII, PCI and HIPA information to reduce liability and fines.
    • Ensure timely access to IT personnel in the Emergency Operations Center, including on-call schedule for response staff.

     

    Implementation:

    Many components of today’s venues are operated via cyber programs that control the components (i.e. HVAC, lighting, PA, video boards, etc.). This should also include public safety systems.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is for all size events.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop an Incident Response Plan to deal with an intrusion/attack/loss of data/ransomware.

    • Implement a forensic analysis following a cyberattack that results in the theft of information, unauthorized access to systems or disruption/destruction of systems

     

    Objectives:

    • Reduces impact.
    • Comply with reporting requirements.

     

    Implementation:

    Immediately notify the FBI.

     

    Have an IT specialist on site.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    For non-U.S. events, contact the relevant legal enforcement agency.

    1. Best Practice:

    Safeguard personal devices that connect to event/ venue systems. Do so only under clearly defined and secured processes.

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection.

     

    Implementation:

    This includes staff that connect via personal devices to the systems.

    1. Best Practice:

    Keep an accurate and current inventory of all venue-owned IT devices and users.

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection.

    1. Best Practice:

    Define security requirements for third-party vendors or other non-event/ venue personnel who will be granted access to IT systems.

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection.

    1. Best Practice:

    Provide training on information security policies, procedures, responsibilities and incident reporting to all employees that use or have access to the event/ venue’s information technology systems.

    • Document training, content and attendees
    1. Best Practice:

    If venue is accessible by navigable waters, then marine patrol and life safety response capabilities should be considered to address criminal/terrorist incidents, accidents or “boat-gating.”

     

    Objectives:

    Boats of various sizes can be used to deliver attacks. Drinking and boating can/ will present issues.

     

    Implementation:

    Coast Guard, marine law enforcement and state wildlife agency can provide assistance.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Applicable only in marine environments.

    1. Best Practice:

    The Crowd Management Plan should include the response by venue security and local law enforcement to address demonstrations, civil disturbances and rioting.

    • Ensure sufficient resources are available

     

    Objectives:

    Considering radical protests/demonstrations, competitor rivalries, alcohol consumption and celebratory rioting at or near venues. The potential exists for an isolated incident(s) to evolve into a major civil disturbance with personal and property damage.

     

    Implementation:

    Pre-planning is important to prevent an incident from getting out of control. Intelligence and advance information are essential to include social media monitoring.

     

    Know your clientele.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This is a growing issue that can be size irrelevant.

    1. Best Practice:

    Venue should identify and determine availability as well as the response time of internal or external resources (staff and equipment) when addressing a structural collapse.

     

    Objectives:

    To address structural collapse (includes temporary seating/bleachers).

     

    Implementation:

    The public safety response will usually be handled by the Fire Department. The cause of the collapse could be accidental or intentional. Also, consider that it may be a crime scene and a mass causality incident.

    1. Best Practice:

    Event producer should coordinate with venue/local authorities to develop a plan that addresses specific needs for mass casualties/ fatalities.

    • Onsite staff need to be very knowledgeable of the mass casualty plan since many medical resources will be off-site and will need time to respond

     

    Objectives:

    To address mass casualty incidents.

     

    Implementation:

    All cities/counties in the U.S. are required to have Mass Casualty/ Disaster Plans therefore, the EAP should contain these Plans as an Annex. The city/ county EMS Mass Casualty/Disaster Plan should be used as a template to facilitate preparedness and response planning for the venue. Plan should include onsite morgue capability.

    1. Best Practice:

    The plan should consider the consequences of damage to public utilities at the venue as well as disruption of public transportation.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop with venue an Evacuation/Shelter-inPlace/Relocation Plan for the venue that sets forth the who, what, when, where and how.

    • Develop with input from public safety partners and event staff
    • Review with Incident Command staff at public safety briefings
    • Prepare for all-hazards
    • Include a Traffic Management Plan for evacuation should it be required
    • Should identify shelter-inplace in and around the venue

     

    Objectives:

    • Life safety is first and foremost during evacuation/ shelter-in-place/relocation
    • Plan provides instructions and guidance on effectively addressing the safety of all individuals in attendance.

     

    Implementation:

    The Evacuation/Shelterin-Place/Relocation Plan is an essential element of the EAP.

     

    Training Resources: NCS4 offers grant funded training through DHS/ FEMA for plan development and execution:

    • MGT-412: Sport and Special Event Evacuation Training and Exercise

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Applicable if in earthquake prone area.

     

    Event/venues in these areas should have a plan in place, then you only need to familiarize you staff with the plan.

    1. Best Practice:

    Define all the potential hazards and scenarios that an earthquake could cause a partial or full evacuation or sheltering.

    • Identify the individual who will make the decision to relocate along with how it will be communicated

     

    Implementation:

    Evacuation planning should be based on a risk assessment that takes time, distance, density within given spaces and size of group(s) into account.

     

    During events ensure egress points are unlocked and have personnel posted to direct people in an evacuation or sheltering movement.

    1. Best Practice:

    Evaluate every potential location for shelter-inplace against all possible types of incidents to determine their ability to offer sufficient protection, along with the total number of individuals each area can safely accommodate. This can be further complicated by an earthquake damaging potential shelters.

     

    Implementation:

    Making the decision to evacuate, shelter-in-place or relocate during an incident is a complicated process and requires input from various entities knowledgeable in the surroundings and structures, the size, distribution and condition of the patrons, staff, the hazard involved and the anticipated response to that hazard.

     

    The length of time for sheltering-in-place will be a factor and must be considered – the longer the time the more individual space required.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Movement to open outdoor areas may be the best course of action.

    1. Best Practice:

    The routes of travel need to be determined for full or partial evacuation, sheltering-in-place and relocation event. This will be complicated by an earthquake.

     

    Implementation:

    These all should be included in Plan(s).

     

    Consider “what if” scenarios as they relate to closing various exits and rerouting. This is where simulation can be useful.

    1. Best Practice:

    Event staff must be posted to control and expedite the movement of people during an evacuation, shelter-in-place and relocation.

    • Also, to reroute individuals if something changes

     

    Implementation:

    Staff have to be ready to direct patrons from their location to the next staff member or to the exit.

    1. Best Practice:

    Voluntary vs. Mandatory

    • Time, conditions, circumstances, number of people and the incident will dictate whether the action is voluntary or mandatory.
    • Anticipate that an incident could occur that would cause panic resulting in a stampede mass evacuation; consider how to respond.

     

    Objectives:

    • Anticipate different potential precipitators and outcomes.
    • Unanticipated incident.

     

    Implementation:

    This is clearly the most dangerous of situations. Plan response of how to use the crowd flow, based on the environment (lighting) and methods of communication.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    This will potentially be a panic situation.

    1. Best Practice:

    Venue/lodging should have a plan for dealing with hazardous materials (i.e. fuels, propane, chemicals, fertilizers, garbage and sewage).

     

    Objectives:

    The expose to hazardous materials could cause a mass casualty event.

     

    Implementation:

    The local fire department and emergency management services are great resources.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) must be available for all hazardous materials in the venue. Include contact information for assistance and maintain copies in the Operation Center.

     

    Objectives:

    • Knowing where to get the information is important.
    • Avoid delays during a crisis.

     

    Implementation:

    If highly hazardous materials are present, have a hazardous materials specialist (usually a fire fighter) on site for large events. MSDS are available in digital or hard copy format.

    1. Best Practice:

    Include procedures and security for fireworks and other pyrotechnics, if used during the event.

     

    Objectives:

    Potential for fire or explosion.

     

    Implementation:

    Must have a fire unit on site.

     

    Provide security for the pyro upon delivery until deployed.

    1. Best Practice:

    In conjunction with the venue/lodging, have a written plan that is part of the EAP that dictates the criteria, roles/responsibilities and identifies the individual who decides on an evacuation.

     

    Objectives:

    Prevention/protection.

     

    Implementation:

    FBI, DHS and BATF can assist in developing plans.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Regardless of event size.

    1. Best Practice:

    Make use of the Unified Command for assessment, decision process and response.

     

    Implementation:

    Establish a Threat Evaluation Team. The FBI can assist.

    1. Best Practice:

    Ensure that all incoming threats, whether telephonic or via other media, are properly recorded and preserved for at least two calendar years following the year in which the threat was received.

     

    Implementation:

    Local/state laws determine control retention times. Check with legal counsel to determine length of time for retention of recorded documentation for the venue.

    1. Best Practice:

    Use Bomb Threat Caller Checklist and train staff who may receive calls/ texts.

    • Install caller identification and/or coordinate phone call trap capability
    • Call may be via Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP)
    • Threat may come from social media

     

    Implementation:

    FBI, BATF and DHS can provide this.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Once a threat is made you should always contact law enforcement and report the threat.

    1. Best Practice:

    Create a Threat Evaluation Team that can be called upon when threat(s) received.

    1. Best Practice:

    Create a program that requires employees to check their own work areas (white-level search) daily for anything out of the ordinary.

     

    Implementation:

    White-level search is an inspection by all staff of their respective workplaces for any articles that are unusual, suspicious or unable to be accounted for.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    For events with security concerns based upon Risk Assessment.

    1. Best Practice:

    Establish pre-event sweeps ideally a few hours before the event and keep controlled (lockdown) until door opening.

    Implementation:

    Set a timeframe ahead of event for pre-scans/ sweeps-this will be dependent upon the size of the venue, the threat intelligence and manpower/ dogs/equipment.

     

    Once sweep is complete, areas must be locked down. Venue should be sterile and can only remain that way if access is controlled.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    For events with security concerns based upon Risk Assessment.

    1. Best Practice:

    Prepare a document on “How to Recognize and Handle a Suspicious Package or Envelope” and train staff.

    • All letters, envelopes and packages should be handled in accordance with instructions set forth in the above document
    • The plan should include the following:
      • Attempt to identify the owner by asking individuals located in proximity to the item
      • If the owner of the item is identified, return to assigned duties
      • If the owner cannot be located, remember the acronym HOT to evaluate need for further action:
        • H – Does the item appear to have been hidden?
        • O – Is the item overtly suspicious (wires, phones, etc.)?
        • T – Is the item typical for the area /type of event?
        • Inform Command Center/law enforcement officer or call 911 if it is threat

     

    Implementation:

    Follow USPS, DHS, FBI or BATF suspicious mail and package best practices when preparing “How To” document.

     

    Venues will rely on public safety personnel to respond and handle this. Review OSHA requirements.

    1. Best Practice:

    Consider processing mail off site, if possible.

    • Any facility used for mail processing should have independent HVAC systems and alarms or monitoring systems that preferably have current or pending SAFETY Act approval
    1. Best Practice:

    Ensure that all staff are trained on recognizing suspicious items and proper handling (protect the area and notify Operation Center).

     

    Objectives:

    Training and testing.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop a plan to address incidents that could occur with the various modes of transportation (bus, train, subway, ferry, rideshare, etc.) that are used in close proximity to the venue. Develop contingency plans for each transportation mode.

     

    Objectives:

    Planned response.

     

    Implementation:

    For larger events consider having a representative(s) in the command center. For smaller events ensure contact numbers are available in case of an emergency.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop a plan to address the response by the venue management team and external resources in the event of a WMD incident.

     

    Objectives:

    Preparation for a worst-case scenario.

     

    Implementation:

    WMD incidents by their very nature are mass casualty and criminal or terrorist acts and therefore are crime scenes. FBI will take control.

     

    Also, because of the magnitude of these types of incidents, a major public safety/emergency management response will be necessary.

     

    FBI and state emergency management should assist in planning.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    For large events with security concerns based upon RTV Assessment.

     

    WMD weapons are classified as Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRNE).

    1. Best Practice:

    Integrate Plan with the larger public safety/ emergency management response plan.

     

    Objectives:

    Determine plan from time of incident until help arrives.

     

    Implementation:

    For rural or smaller communities, it may take longer for specialty units to arrive.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop a plan to address the response by the venue management team and external resources in the event of a WMD incident.

     

    Objectives:

    Preparation for a worst-case scenario.

     

    Implementation:

    WMD incidents by their very nature are mass casualty and criminal or terrorist acts and therefore are crime scenes. FBI will take control.

     

    Also, because of the magnitude of these types of incidents, a major public safety/emergency management response will be necessary.

     

    FBI and state emergency management should assist in planning.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    For large events with security concerns based upon RTV Assessment.

     

    WMD weapons are classified as Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRNE).

    1. Best Practice:

    Integrate Plan with the larger public safety/ emergency management response plan.

     

    Objectives:

    Determine plan from time of incident until help arrives.

     

    Implementation:

    For rural or smaller communities, it may take longer for specialty units to arrive.

    1. Best Practice:

    Develop a plan to deal with onsite fatalities:

    • Natural Causes
    • Accidental
    • Criminal

    It is important to identify who will take the lead in the event of a fatality at the event. Determine when cancellation should be a consideration. Location will be a factor. Determine who will deliver the message.

     

    Objectives:

    Manage brand reputation and ensure information is communicated sensitively and appropriately.

     

    Implementation:

    If the fatality is the result of criminal activity, event cancelation may be required as it could be considered a crime scene and thus impact the event.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    You may not be able to move the body until a medical examiner releases it, thus possible event cancellation.

    1. Best Practice:

    An After-Action Review (AAR) is an important component of the continued security and safety process.

     

    Objectives:

    “Lessons learned” are important to continuous improvement.

     

    Implementation:

    Essential to the process for improvement.

     

    Applicability/Scalability:

    Applicable to all size events.

     

    Large events, large AAR; smaller events, smaller AAR.

    1. Best Practice:

    Conduct review after every event.

    • WHEN-conduct the review as soon as possible after the event, optimally within 48 hours
    • WHERE-any comfortable, quiet location that can accommodate all key personnel around a table
    • HOW-using the Specialized Management Coordination Components (SMCCs) as a format for the review - obviously the primary input is verbal, but the total review should include written reports, arrest reports, complaints, etc.
    • WHO-key personnel who were in event management roles and those who headed up the SMCCs (If you used SMCCs)
    • WHAT-a written AAR draft report should be prepared with an analysis of the information obtained. The AAR should be provided to all meeting participants to review for completeness, accuracy, and to provide additional feedback.

     

    Objectives:

    • It is advantageous to capture the info while it is still fresh in everyone’s mind. This creates a relaxed environment. These are natural segments.
    • Collect input from key personnel and those under them to gather input from all staff levels.

     

    Implementation:

    Appoint a scribe to capture and document the information.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    After the review is completed, the final AAR should be provided to the participating components with a list of recommendations.

     

    Objectives:

    Document process and lessons learned.

     

    Implementation:

    Review what was done right and what needs improvement.

     

    1. Best Practice:

    Incorporate results of the AAR back into the planning cycle (i.e. what to keep, what to change, how and why changes should be made).

     

    Objectives:

    True value of the process.

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