OSHA Urges Crowd Control
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is encouraging 14 major retail companies to take precautions to prevent worker injuries during the holiday season’s upcoming sales events. The agency has sent a letter and fact sheet on “Crowd Management Safety Tips for Retailers” to the companies’ CEOs.
In 2008, a worker was trampled to death while a mob of shoppers rushed through the doors of a large store to take advantage of an after-Thanksgiving-Day sales event. The store was not using the kind of crowd management measures recommended in OSHA’s fact sheet.
According to the fact sheet , crowd management plans should include having trained security personnel or police officers on-site, setting up barricade or rope lines for pedestrians and crowd control well in advance of customers arriving at the store, making sure that barricades are set up so that the customers’ line does not start right at the entrance of the store, having in place emergency procedures that address potential dangers, and having security personnel or trained customer service representatives explain approach and entrance procedures to the arriving pubic.
OSHA also recommends not allowing additional customers to enter the store when it reaches its maximum occupancy level and not blocking or locking exit doors.
For more information: www.osha.gov/ooc/blackfridayletter.pdf.
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