Stay Safe At Summer Concerts and Festivals – And Have Fun!
Every year, Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start to summer fun – and the beginning of the outdoor festival and concert season. The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) has developed safety tips to keep in mind for these events, to make sure everyone can enjoy the fun safely.
Have a Plan From the Beginning
As you arrive, pick an outside meeting place in case the group you are with gets separated. Then if that happens – whether as the result of an emergency or not – everyone knows right where to go. Also, choose one relative or friend to call in case there is an emergency. Make sure everyone has that contact person’s phone number.
Take a Look Around
Before entering, it is a good idea to take a careful look at the site itself: do the buildings and grounds appear to be in good condition? Is the entrance wide and does it open out to allow easy exiting in an emergency, or even just when the show’s over? Too many people trying to leave at once – especially under the pressure of an emergency – can often make a dangerous situation more dangerous, or even deadly.
Look for Plenty of Exits
As you enter, note the location where you came in. Pay attention to any other marked exits you can see. Note which of these exits is closest to your seat, and the best way to get to it. In an emergency, the main entrance you came in may not be available. This is also an excellent time to look for visible sprinklers, fire extinguishers, and, smoke alarms. Also, look for visible security, and consider locating any first aid stations. And make sure the path to exits are clear – no chairs or equipment blocks any part. If the way to an exit is blocked, even partially, report it to someone with the venue right away.
Trust Your Gut
Finally, do you feel safe? Especially watch out for overcrowding, or dangerous fire sources – this might include pyrotechnics at a concert, or even burning candles at an arts and crafts festival. Trust your instincts if something just does not seem right. If it does not seem safe, contact a representative of the event. In extreme cases, you might also consider calling the local fire department or fire marshal.
What if There is an Emergency?
While emergencies are rare at concerts and festivals like these, they do sometimes happen. In the event you experience an emergency, following these tips upfront will help you be prepared. Also, always listen to and follow the instructions of event and security staff, as well as first responders like police and firefighters.
Learning and using these simple safety tips can make attending large events like summer concerts and festivals as safe as possible for everyone.
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