The sudden nature of the COVID-19 virus saw the shutting down of the economy of different nations. But this stagnancy could not be sustained, and it became necessary to devise a means of managing the situation so that economic activities could continue. One of the areas most affected was public events because a lot of people are usually involved. To this effect, measures were taken to help avoid the spread of the virus in any form of gathering.
In everyday situations, proper crowd management is essential for the crowd’s safety and the event’s smooth running. But during this pandemic, crowd control became a number one priority, with stricter and more complex measures to avoid spreading the COVID-19 virus. Making this work requires a lot of creativity in planning.
Any form of gathering during this pandemic risks spreading the virus, especially if it is an indoor gathering. The COVID-19 virus spreads quickly in poorly ventilated places, so it is safer to hold such meetings outdoors.
Attendees of such events should have taken a PCR home test or applied for the 5-day test and release method. They should come with their test result to gain access to the event. Availability of their test results prevents the risk of letting an already infected person into the event.
Aside from asking for a COVID-19 test result before access, a thermal screening should be done before letting in anyone. If an attendee’s temperature reaches a certain level, they should be denied entry.
For children, the temperature considered high is anywhere from 39℃, while for adults, it is 39.4℃.
Another rule that the people in charge should enforce is wearing facemasks at all times. At no cost should masks be removed to avoid any risk of transmitting the virus. Facemasks should cover the face from the chin to the nose of all the individuals wearing them.
Hand Sanitizers (alcohol-based), soap, and water should be available at the venue, both at the entrance and inside. There should be strict adherence to the social distance rule. Health personnel should also be available to ensure these rules are followed strictly and be on standby in the case of any health-related emergency.
When organising events or gatherings during this period, we should be very intentional about the number of people present during such events. If it is an indoor event, the number of people attending should be small for proper ventilation.
There are different ways to cut short the population of people in a place at a given time.
Blended events should be encouraged asides from ensuring “invite-only” access to events to cater to a few people who will be adequately spread out at the occasion. Blended events encourage remote participation, reducing the presence of many people at the venue. These events can be enabled for conferences, weddings, seminars, and religious programmes, among other gatherings.
For example, churches can split services into two or three sections to avoid overpopulation in the hall. This action, of course, should be supported by all social distance and other covid-19 protocols. Not all crowded events are pre-planned. Some examples are protests and political campaigns, to name a few. In situations like this, it is not easy to control the crowd, especially not with a pandemic at hand.
In cases like this, there is not much to do to help concerning crowd management. It is mainly left to the protesters to abide by the COVID-19 safety procedures.
After participating in a protest like this, it is advisable to isolate yourself for two weeks. If you feel any symptoms, you do a PCR home test.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected lives in many ways. Now, it is up to people to find the best ways to carry out our regular activities while staying safe from the virus, and that is why it is vital to adhere to COVID-19 protocols that have been put in place for our safety.