21-23 Aug 2024
ICC, Sydney

Mass Gatherings – The Role of Security Professionals

Jul 18, 2017

Concentrations of large numbers of people in accessible public areas can potentially be targets of terrorist and criminal attacks presenting constant challenges to security professionals.

Areas of mass gatherings include sporting events/venues, shopping complexes, open-air markets, business, tourism and entertainment venues, cultural facilities, hotels, public transport and unplanned events.

Our nation’s cities often have large numbers of people gathering in this way, which provide the opportunity for an attack to occur because of their accessibility and vulnerability.  These large events have potential consequences in terms of casualties, economic impact and generating fear within the community.

The Melbourne Bourke Street attack in January this year, the truck attacks in Berlin, Nice attack in 2016, the attacks at the Bataclan Concert Hall and the Stade de France in Paris in 2015, and the 2013 Boston Marathon attack all highlight the vulnerability of planned and unplanned mass gatherings in their many forms.

Victoria Police have issued out information in regards to mass gatherings stating that “these places by their nature allow public access, many forms of security that are applied in the protection of critical infrastructure may not be appropriate for protecting” (Victoria Police, 2016). In 2009, the Australian National Counter Terrorism Committee stated that protection of places of mass gatherings is most effective through business-government partnerships.

While the level of vulnerability can never be mitigated, increased focus within businesses, governments, and communities to ensure they are aware and preventative to build resilience, security, and safety at large events where the public gather. This plays a key role to decreasing the likelihood of terrorist and criminal attacks to occur.

However, whilst the media focuses public attention on the tragedies of attacks at mass gatherings, many, including those of significant size such as the Super Bowl in 2017, can and do, take place without any incidents.

Minimising risks and threats that may occur at mass gatherings is a collective responsibility for community members and security professionals; by building resilience to make future events safer and more secure.

Story Credit: Security Solutions 

Source: http://www.securitysolutionsmagazine.biz/2017/05/01/mass-gatherings-the-role-of-security-professionals/ (Mass Gatherings – The Role of Security Professionals) featuring Victoria Police http://www.police.vic.gov.au/content.asp?document_id=43334

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