Planning for a special event can be difficult. Planning for the potential risks and hazards associated with a special event is even more difficult, but it is essential to the event’s success.
At Virginia Tech, a special event is not necessarily defined by the number of people attending the event. Rather, the emphasis is on the event's impact on the university's ability to respond to a large-scale emergency that may occur during the event, or to the exceptional demands that the activity places on various support services.
What is a Special Event Emergency Plan?
A Special Event Emergency Plan (SEEP), is a formal, written plan developed by the event organizers that identifies potential emergency conditions at the event site and prescribes the procedures to be followed to minimize risk and prevent loss of life and property.
Every SEEP must be tailored to site-specific conditions and to the requirements of the agency/organization that owns or regulates the site of the event. Event planners should consider the scope of the event, the risks to spectators and participants, community impact, and the support (including personnel and logistics) required.
Event organizers should contact VTEM for SEEP templates and guidance prior to their event date.
Why is it important to have a Special Event Emergency Plan?
An SEEP is needed to:
Define the coordination of necessary actions by the sponsor of the event and the responsible municipal, county, and State officials to provide for timely notification, warning, and evacuation in the event of an emergency, including catastrophic emergencies beyond the normal expected hazards, i.e., weather phenomenon, etc.
Reduce the risk of loss of life and property damage resulting from an emergency.
Unique situations do sometimes develop that may result in emergencies. Therefore, it is prudent for the sponsor to identify conditions that could lead to on-site or site related disasters, in order to initiate emergency measures that could prevent or minimize the consequences to life and property.
Components of a Special Event Emergency Plan may include a(n):
Event Leadership Contact Information
Event Operations Location
Schedule of Events
Evacuations Assembly Areas/Shelter-in-Place Gathering Points
On-Site Emergency Personnel
Access and Parking Considerations
Request Special Event Emergency Plan assistance
Virginia Tech Emergency Management is available to answer questions and provide guidance to university organizations preparing a Special Event Emergency Plan. Contact VTEM for SEEP templates and guidance.
Request radio support
Virginia Tech Emergency Management has a small supply of two-way radios available for loan to groups within the Virginia Tech community. To request radios for your next special event or learn more about the program, visit the Radio Program page.