BS8406:2020 and Event Management

Event Management & Organisation – Are you up to speed with BS8406:2020 – Code of Practice?

As things slowly return to normal, we’re bound to see more events taking place within the UK and, of course, these are most welcome!

However, gathering crowds bring their own hazards – including crushing and surging; dangerous behaviours such as climbing on equipment and criminal behaviour such as theft, drug taking or even worse. This means those in charge of crowd control and stewarding have an important role in ensuring crowd safety and security.

Unfortunately, many organisations had to postpone events since the first lockdown in March 2020, so it’s possible that they may have missed the fact that there have been changes in terms of recommendations for event management, organisation, training and pre-employment screening for those employed in event steward and crowd safety.

This could have serious consequences since failing to apply the new BS8406:2020 – which replaced the previous standard in August 2020 – may nullify insurances and lead to adverse media should things go wrong.

Who should take note of BS8406:2020?

BS8406:2020 is aimed at companies which provide contractual event stewarding services for both outdoor and indoor events and provides recommendations regarding the infrastructure, staffing, training, operation, and management of such organisations.

This affects companies, local authorities, service providers, institutions, and individuals involved in:

– Event management
– Event Production
– Venues hosting events
– Exhibition or event contractors

Do I need to comply with the update?

The Security Industry Authority lists 5 exemptions from deploying licensed individuals. These are:

1. In respect of those responsible for health and safety and comfort of attendees within a specific area
2. Those monitoring pedestrian flow at key points of the event
3. Those providing advice and guidance to visitors arriving in cars or on foot
4. Those reporting to a supervisor or safety offices about damage or defects at the event which may threaten health and safety
5. Volunteers

Additionally, this standard does not apply to static site guarding, mobile control services or door supervisors which are covered by BS7858.

What is BS8406:2020 designed to do?

The aim of this standard is in line with health and safety legislation and looks to reduce potential accidents and injuries as well as avoiding the chaotic consequences of poor crowd control.

It requires that each individual providing event stewarding or crowd control must have their risk assessed, evaluated, and documented so that the appropriate level of pre-employment screening is defined. There are four levels:

Level 1 – which is mostly applicable to small local community events
Level 2 – mostly for individuals involved in very low risk events
Level 3 – applicable for most individuals employed in the capacity of stewarding and/or crowd control
Level 4 – for those involved in high-risk roles or events or to individuals involved in a position of authority

What will be checked within BS8406 screening?

Like many security and vetting guidelines, it is recommended that each employee is vetted in terms of their:

– 5-year employment history
– Proof of ID
– Proof of address
– Right to Work
– Education

It may well be that Local Authorities will request that this standard is adopted as a condition of granting a Private Entertainment Licence for larger events in their area. So, it may be worth having a conversation with them in this respect.

Please get in touch if you would like advice as to which level you will need for your event or indeed, need pre-employment screening in this area.