Social Distancing will be Prominent When Sporting Complexes Reopen
- By Peter Ford
- Aug 07, 2020
Aficionados across the United States await the return
of professional sports and the reopening of stadiums
and sports complexes. The bad news at this point is that
we simply do not know exactly when fans can return
in mass-scale to watch live sporting events. The good
news is that they will eventually return — although
likely with some pandemic-induced protocols.
While hard timelines remain estimations and could
change with a new spike in COVID cases, organizations
are planning for the time when they can reopen their
gates. As they plan, they will seek guidance from health
officials to establish screening protocols for workers and
guests to minimize sick individuals from entering. They
will also seek guidance on face coverings, temperature
checks and social distancing to mitigate the risk of exposure
in case potentially contagious individuals attend
One of the most prominent changes fans will assuredly see when sporting facilities reopen is the practice of social distancing. Pre-game festivities
that typically draw large crowds are likely to be cancelled, with tailgaters closely watched to ensure they maintain appropriate distance.
Lines to enter facilities, at concession stands and restrooms will probably be much longer as individuals are kept at safe distances. Seating
capacity will also be reduced, with seats left empty for space to separate fans.
Temperature screening stations near gate entrances will also be a probable addition to the stadium experience, with those displaying a high
temperature being directed to additional screening by on-hand medical personnel who will determine if they can enter the facility. Then of course,
there will be protocols for the wearing of face coverings by spectators, staff and first responders.
As the world continues to grapple with the coronavirus, we might not know exactly when sports will return in its past form. But they will, and
we will have to adapt to the changes required to keep the pandemic under control.
This article originally appeared in the July / August 2020 issue of Security Today.
Peter Ford is the director of G4S Corporate Risk Services.