Have you ever thought about the vulnerability of sporting venues? Have you ever thought about how they can be prime targets for a disastrous event or a terrorist attack? Olympics have been a place of interest, for example the 1972 Munich Olympics when a Palestinian group kidnapped nine members of the Israeli team and the 1996 Atlanta Olympics where a bomb went off in Centennial Park. Large football stadiums have also been targeted: October 2005 when an Oklahoma student claimed he had a bomb strapped to himself outside the stadium packed with 84,000 fans and in October 2006 when NFL stadiums had threats of bomb attacks.
I believe it is vital for all sport venues, both small and large, to have a risk assessment process to assess the level of risks and threats as well as to identify it’s vulnerabilities. In order to protect against threats and terrorist activity, the risk management crew must acknowledge information from a threat assessment, a vulnerability assessment, and a criticality assessment. This valuable information will help the risk management team better assists if a disastrous event were to occur.
The Sport Even Security Assessment Model (SESAM) was created to evaluate sport security operations. The assessment includes four steps: plan (identify sport even security action team and characterization of assets); do (threat assessment and vulnerability analysis of critical assets); check (consequence evaluation and risk assessment); and act (consequence reduction proposals).
Having a safe, secured, and monitored environment to play sports in is vital for the safety, success, and wellness of athletes and performers. Playing in a vulnerable venue as opposed to a secured venue affects the performers ability to perform up to his or her ability. Sporting venue’s risk management teams should take precaution and make sure their venues go through the process of a risk assessment. These assessments have the potential to prevent disasters and save lives.