What is an event safety plan

An event safety plan is a collection of information about how you intend to run a project safely. It can a range from a basic description of the work you are going to do and what measures you are taking to mitigate any risks; to a much larger document detailing everything from how you’ll manage traffic to how you’ll interface with the emergency services.

The concept of an Event Management Plan can be found in early event industry guidance such as the original Event Safety Guide (1999), paragraph 38:

“To provide a comprehensive overview to all these planning aspects it may be helpful to produce an event safety management plan.”

This was confirmed and expanded as part of the 2013 re-write as defined in chapter 2.43 of  The Purple Guide (2013):

“It is useful to summarise and consolidate information into a single authoritative document, commonly referred to as an Event Management Plan (the Safety Plan). This will vary significantly in size and detail, depending on the scale and complexity of the event.”

Both documents refer to a number of suggested headings as areas for consideration, and we have included these in the template headings within the Event Safety Plan app.

There is no ‘approved method’ of creating a safety plan, the important thing is that it’s suitable for the size and complexity of the project. For example a safety plan for a wedding reception in a marquee will be much simpler than a safety plan for a large public event in central London.

You may find that the organisations for whom the the safety plan is written (eg. local councils, the police, clients, venues) will have specific requirements in which case it’s important that you ensure the plan contains all the information they are asking for.

What is CDM?

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM) cover the management of health, safety and welfare when carrying out construction projects.

CDM regulations were introduced for the construction industry but were not widely enforced for temporary event sites until they were updated in 2015.

From 2015, the build and dismantle phase of an event  are now classed as construction and therefore the regulations (in some form) will apply. This has practical implications for how you plan your event and what documents you need to produce as part of the safety planning process. For more information see our CDM help pages.

What is the Event Management Plan for?

The main use of the Event Management Plan document is to show the management of event safety for the live elements of the event. These will differ greatly to the event Pre-Construction Information and event Construction Phase Plan documents which deal specifically with the build and break down of the event.

There will be a greater number of considerations that have to be managed when dealing with the live event – the numbers of people, emergency procedures and management style will be very different to when its just the build team and your contractors.

Comparison with the Pre-Construction Information and Construction Phase Plan

Some elements of the Event Management Plan will be the same as the Pre-Construction Information and Construction Phase Plans – so you can use the app to duplicate and reuse these sections (for example, its unlikely that the address of your event site will change between the build and live parts of the event).

There are however many elements that may change – organizational management structure, first aid provision and welfare arrangements are just three examples.

Who is the document for?

The Event Management Plan can be a great resource for those who have an interest in the management of safety of the project. This could include staff members, volunteers, contractors and members of the statutory authorities (Health and Safety Executive, Local Authority) and blue light services. Done right, the Event Management Plan can be a resource document which can be shared widely to inform, educate and inform all those that will be working on your event site.