In the 14 years that I have been planning events in Calgary, I have seen a shift in the industry of Calgary Event Production. Both clients and planners are taking a look at the bigger picture of risk management and this is becoming a growing aspect of our industry.
This of course stems from some of the horror stories we’ve all heard regarding various incidents where something looked innocent, like an outdoor concert, quickly turned into mayhem, simply due to a strong gust of wind. Another example is the very tragic fire incident in Rhode Island, where a night club show ended in numerous deaths and casualties as a result of pyrotechnics that were used in a space that wasn’t designed for them.
Calgary Event Planning Venue Risk Assessment
In Calgary, the event community, especially larger venues, work very closely with The City of Calgary fire department, to determine safety protocols and what’s required to ensure our guests’ safety.
I recently had the opportunity to help build a client’s 10-day charitable event.
They wanted to run it over the course of The Calgary Stampede. One of the challenges was The City of Calgary’s detailed application process. Fortunately for us, The City staff we encountered all the way along were very helpful.
The City of Calgary event staff ensured we understood what the role was of each of the various City of Calgary departments within the application process. They also helped us assess and mitigate risk. This is further value we were able to provide our client. So remember, at the end of the day, if you had never planned an outdoor event, be sure to collaborate with The City of Calgary to ensure you can do it, and do it safely!
When working with traditional venues, usually the internal event coordinator will be the best person to liaise with regarding risk management. It’s also important to note that most venues in Calgary have a list of rules when it comes to rigging for the event and the associated health and safety procedures. Usually people from the internal audio / visual team understand the ins and outs of their venue and can assist in making sure your event is a safe one during setup and event execution.
Calgary Event Planning Security
Many venues will also work with you on security and will help you determine if additional security is required. You may think “Its just a holiday event” but hiring additional security can be helpful if any of your attendees have a few too many alcoholic beverages. Sometimes it’s as simple as ensuring a guest gets in a taxi and home safely.
In some instances, you may want to consider hiring an EMS person to be onsite for the night of your event. For example, in a room with 500 plus people, the probability of someone choking, having an, allergic reaction, perhaps falling or tripping or even experiencing dehydration is high. An onsite EMS person can help limit the liability of something going wrong or if it does, they can assist immediately.
Calgary Event Planning Insurance
I always counsel my clients on obtaining additional event-related insurance. This is especially important when alcohol in any quantity is being served. Event insurance can cover various costs from someone who drinks too much and causes harm to themselves or others, all the way to cancellation insurance in case something like weather causes your event to be cancelled.
In summary, work with professionals, understand that each event supplier requires proper insurance and don’t be afraid to stop work if it looks like it could be unsafe.
We hope things never go wrong; however, we want to be sure we’re prepared in case they do.