Event safety guide for event organisers

Last updated: 25 January 2022

6. 10 tips for safe events

1. Plan well ahead

Prepare and rehearse for safety and welfare at least six months before. Larger events or those with high risks may need a year to plan. Know your site and get any consents or licences well in advance.

2. Appoint a safety officer

Choose an experienced person to be the Safety Officer on the organising committee. Ensure the person chosen has seniority and enough standing to make things happen and make safety their only job.

3. Take expert advice

Get independent safety advice at an early stage and, if necessary, set aside funds to pay for it. Seek out those with a proven track record in safety for your type of event. Have them check your plans, your risk assessments and have them test your assumptions.

4. Contact the agencies

Contact the fire, police and ambulance services and the local authority's Environmental Health and Licensing Teams, Resilience Services and Highways Department.

Make sure each agency knows your plans and get their advice at an early stage.

5. Contact the SAG

The Safety Advisory Group (SAG) brings all the emergency services and council officers together and will ensure that your information reaches the right people. For a larger event the group may ask you to give a presentation and meet with the group.

6. Complete a written risk assessment

Get your Safety Officer to draw up a proper risk assessment together with a fire-based risk assessment. Have it checked, tested and get advice from SAG.

7. Plan for traffic

Consider traffic movement before, during and after the event. Take advice from the Police and the Highways about traffic into and through the site, temporary road closures and parking orders. Have professional parking control. Consider other forms of transport shuttle buses. Consider other events on the same day and nearby road works.

8. Plan for emergencies

Draw up evacuation plans. Make sure the emergency services can get in and around the site. Plan for extreme circumstances like unexpectedly high numbers of people, excess rain and winds, heat or cold.

9. Appoint and train stewards

Get advice on the number and training of stewards needed. Make sure they are well briefed, easily identified, have good communications and are not doing anything else.

10. Respect your neighbours

Plan from the outset to make sure your event causes the least possible impact to those living in the area. Pay special attention to noise, parking and trespass.