Health and Safety

Have you planned for incidents and emergencies?

You must have plans in place to respond effectively to health and safety incidents and other emergencies that might occur at an event. 

This emergency plan should to be in proportion to the level of risk presented by event activities and the potential extent and severity of the incident.

Emergency procedures should be prepared for staff and volunteers to follow if a significant incident/emergency arises, e.g. sudden bad weather, a fire or structural failure.

It should include contingencies to deal with incidents and situations as varied as an entertainment act cancelling at short notice, severe weather, missing children or the unavailability of key staff in your team.

You will also need to consider your response to more serious emergencies, including major incidents that will require help from the emergency services and implementation of their regional emergency plans.

The National Counter-terrorism Security Office have produced specific advice to help mitigate the threat of a terrorist attack in crowded places.

Make sure you will have enough medical assistance and ambulances onsite and liaise with your local NHS and ambulance service so they can balance your needs against their local capacity and clarify how patients will be taken to hospital. The Events Industry Forum’s ‘purple guide’ includes example first-aid and medical assessments for an audience at an event.

If any accident or dangerous occurrence does occur, action must be taken to prevent any further incidents taking place; the incident should be recorded and reported in accordance with RIDDOR; and the names and addresses of witnesses should be obtained, photographs taken and a report made by the event organiser.  You will also need to advise your own insurance company.

Plan escape routes, exits signs and lighting to help with evacuations together with methods of communication. For further guidance on escape routes and strategies see the

Guide to safety at sports grounds and Fire safety risk assessment guides

ID: 4774, revised 19/03/2019