Hardening Mass Gatherings

By Carlton Purvis, Published May 06, 2013, 12:00am EDT (Info+)

Hardening mass gatherings is inherently challenging yet increasingly important. As the Boston bombing demonstrated, doing so is hard over the large areas and crowds. In this note, we share recommendations from Jim McGee [link no longer available], Senior Program Manager at The Soufan Group [link no longer available].

McGee has more than 25 years of law enforcement experience, much of it working on international security issues and infrastructure protection. He is also an adjunct professor at the Tulane University Department of Homeland Security Studies and a former member of the National Center for Spectator Sport Safety and Security at the University of Southern Mississippi.  We talked by phone about what it takes to harden marathons, large venues and mass gatherings while McGee was on his way to a meeting with the Brazilian delegation for the 2014 World Cup. 

The ******* ***** ** ***: *** ********

***** ****** **** *** **** ****** Olympics ******** ** ****** *** *** Commonwealth ***** ** ***** ** ****. Despite ****** **** **** ** ***** to ******, ** ****, ** ** not ********** ** ****** * ******** route. “You **** * **-**** **** *****. That ** ***** ** **** ** a **** ****** ** *******, *** it *** ** ****** ********* ** a **** **** ****** ***** ** what ********** *** ******* ***,” ***** said.

“**** *’** **** **** **** ** the ************** ** ******* *** *********** deployed ***** *** *****,” ***** ****. “You **** ******** **** *** ******** above *** ****** *** **’* ***** for ***** ********** ** ****. **** large ****** *********** **** *** ********** to ***** ******** ** *********.”

** **** **** ********** *****, **** up ** ******* ********* ***** *** *********** ****** ** on *** ****** ********* *** **** and **** *** ***********. **** *** keep ** *** *** *** ********** activity *** *** *** * ****** look ** ****** *** *** **** been ******* ** ******** ** *********, from ***** *********** ***** ** ******** cameras.

**** ***** *********** ******* ******* ******** distance ******* ******* *** **********, ******* elevated ************ ***** ***** *** ***** and ******** ***** ***** **** *** ** discreetly ******.  “*** ***’* **** ** have *** ***** **** ******* * sealed *** ** **** ** ****** vehicles ***** *** *****,” ***** ****. 

*** ********* ****** *** ******** *********, however, ** ** ********* * ********* from *** ******* *****: ***** *** end *** ******** ** * *******. “****’* going ** **** ******** ******* *** can ********* *********, **** ******* **** who *** ****** ** *** ***** and **** ******** ********* **** **** the ******* ** ****** ****** *** in *** ****** ... * **** some **** *** ****** *** **** to ******** *** ***** ****’** ****** had*** * ***** **’* ***** ** from * ****** *********** ** *** to *** ** ** * ******* or ** *****.” 

***** **** ***** ** * ******* that *** ** ******* ** ****** any ***** *****:

Threat **********

******** **** ********** ****** **** * reliable ****** **********, ***** ****. “*** need ** **** **** *** ********* is ** *** ****, **** *** the ****** **** *** ****** **** event.” ***** *** ** ******** **** gang ******** ** ********* ****** ** natural *********. 

******* ** ** *** ***** *** assessment ****** ** ******* ** ******* intervals **** ****** **** ******** ** the ***** **** ******. ** *** time ** *** *****, ********** *** security ****** ** ******* ****** *********** multiple ***** * *** *** ** least **** **** *****. 

Venue **** **********

* **** ********** ** *** ***** should ** ********* ***** ** ** order ** ******** ********* *************** ** the ********* ******** ****, ***** ******** and ******* ***** **********. ** ******** gaps *** ********, ********** ******* **** be *********** ** ******* *** *************.

Emergency ******** *****

****** *********** *** *** ***********. * ***** part ** ************ ** ****** * response ******** ** *** **** ** an ********* ******** **** (***). **** should ******* ******** ******** ** ********** for ********* ********* **** **** *******, terrorism, ****** ****** ** ****** ********* and ***********.

********

***** ***** *** ************ **** *********** *** *********, ***** organizers ****** ***** *** **** ******** drills *** *** ********* *********.  “*** have ** **** **** *********. ****’* when ***’** **** ********** **** ** physical ********, ***** ******** *** ******** plans,” ***** ****. “***** ******** *** exercise *** **** **** ***** **** as **** ******* ********** *******.” 

**************

**** ** *** **** **** ** the ******* ***** ********** ******* ** until *** ***** ** *** **** place. ***** *** ***** ** ** critical **** ** ***** ****** ****** is **** ** ******* **** **** right *** **** **** ***** ****** the *****. **** *** ******* ****** all **** ** *** **** ** a ********** *********** *****.

Comments (2)

Really nice succinct summary of large event security. I have been fortunate to have friends and collegues coordinating Olympic security. I have learned effective volunteer management is critical, as is people flow through checkpoints.

The steps outlined are applicable to any event, large or small, as well as any facility looking to enhance physical security. The key is to be proactive, meaning careful evaluations, site analysis/preparation and personnel training to include various scenario drills.

Great synopsis!

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