Safety is a key issue when a night club security expert evaluates the operations and premises of a bar or nightclub. But is it a primary concern of your employees and management when it comes to your patrons as well? Considering that the number of incidents involving a guest injury is exponentially higher when large numbers of people, social distractions and entertainment converge – it should be. Crowd Control In a study that was done a number of years ago at Griffith University in Australia, a combination of interior design, crowding and aggression contribute to many of the guest injuries in a bar and night club. The report suggests from a nightclub management perspective that an operator and their employees pay special attention to one of the most dangerous spots in a club – the dance floor. According to its authors: “It was found that the more crowded venues tended to be the more violent, and in these high-risk establishments crowding increased more rapidly with patron density than in low-risk venues. Crowding appeared to arise partly from inappropriate pedestrian flow patterns caused by poor location of entry and exit doors, dance floors, bars and restrooms.” Bar Service In another report in the British Medical Journal, assaults related to the service of alcohol in bars and clubs are one of the predominant factors of injuries reported at healthcare facilities emergency rooms. Nightclub management services should pay special attention to the following according to the BMT study: “Certain establishments that continuously offer cheap drink promotions, allow bartenders to over serve obviously intoxicated customers, with management that ignores overcrowding, and door staff who overlook the presence of drugs were contributing factors to eventual violence in or outside the premises of a bar and nightclub.” Premises Conditions The physical design and lighting issues in a bar and nightclub are also factors that can contribute to customers getting injured. Several areas we recommend you examine should include access to exits, potential crime in the parking lot and lack of foresight by on-site security staff such as door persons and bouncers that can magnify an existing problem. According to LPT Security Consulting, who has extensive expertise in security management of other premises, staff presence and demeanor are a key preventative measure to consider as part of your nightclub management services: “A door person or bouncer’s strength and commanding presence should not be the first line of defense. Their ability to communicate and attempt to defuse and de-escalate situations should be used instead. It is critical that you hire staff in these positions that possess the skills to be a good listener, focus on customer service, be firm yet fair, act calm under stress, and have the ability to control emotions in potentially volatile situations.” Equipment Issues Another critical area of potential safety problems can be the equipment used by musicians and other live performance personnel. The following types of equipment from a night club security expert perspective should be given special attention by management and staff: “The placement of speakers, monitors and cords in areas where guests come and go such as near restrooms entrances and along the perimeter of a stage could cause someone to trip and fall based on our experience. Crowded conditions in proximity to stairways with band members on stage nearby could cause someone to be hit by falling equipment during a performance.” In summary, a bar and nightclub business should develop and implement a security management plan to address and provide solutions for these critical areas of potential safety problems. Adopting an all-inclusive approach that combines both the attention of your managers and employees along with thinking like a night club security expert can prevent guest injury, bad publicity and costly lawsuits.