Crowd Safety and Survival


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Crowd Safety and Survival
Practical Event and Public Gathering Safety Tips
Larry B. Perkins, CPP, CMP
Lulu Press, Inc Morrisville, North Carolina
By and Band of Writers Co

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Crowd Safety and Survival

  1. 1. ALSO BY LARRY B. PERKINS Jake the Cowhand Jasper Rabbit Crowd Management; In the Eye of the Storm Day of Event Cancellation Procedures Crowd Safety Tips ® Staying Cool in Hot Situations (2005) Mirror, Mirror: Reflections of the Soul, Spirit, and Will (2005)
  2. 2. Crowd Safety and SurvivalPractical Event and Public Gathering Safety Tips Larry B. Perkins, CPP, CMP Lulu Press, Inc Morrisville, North Carolina By and Band of Writers Coalition
  3. 3. 5/6/2005 8:49 PMCROWD SAFETY AND SURVIVALPRACTICAL EVENT AND PUBLIC GATHERING SAFETY TIPSCrowd Safety and Survival: Practical Event and Public GatheringSafety Tips, Published By Lulu Press, IncCopyright © 2004 by Larry B. PerkinsLibrary of Congress Control Number: 2004097634ISBN 1-4116-1935-8Cover Design by Larry B. PerkinsMyBook, MB, and Band of Writers are trademarks of Band ofWriters Coalition Publishers. “A three in One Project” and the“PERC System, Crowd Safety Tips,” “Staying Cool in HotSituations,” and “Day of Event Cancellation Procedures” areprotected by copyrightALL RIGHTS RESERVEDNo part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic,mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the priorpermission of the author.While every precaution has been taken in the preparation of thisbook, the publisher/author assumes no responsibility for errors oromissions, or for damages resulting from the use of informationcontained herein.For Information:Band of Writers Coalition, 510 Berlin Way, Suite 1, Morrisville, NC27560 or visit Also, Printed in the United Sates of America First Edition (V6) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 vi
  4. 4. WARNINGvii
  5. 5. WARNINGWARNINGWhen life is imperiled or a dire situation is at hand, safealternatives may not exist. To deal with the worst casescenarios presented in this book, we highly recommend-insist, that the best course of action is to consult aprofessionally trained expert.While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy ofthe contents, suggestions, recommendations, andinformation contained herein, we are not responsible andassume no liability for any damages caused or alleged to becaused, directly or indirectly, incidentally or consequentially,to any person, firm, or third party using the informationcontained in this book. The information is provided withoutwarranty. ix
  6. 6. LARRY B. PERKINSThe author is not attempting to provide legal, medical, orother professional services or advice in this book. Thetechniques, illustrations, and data contained herein arestrictly informational. It is strongly recommended that legal,medical, and other expert assistance—and/or the services ofa competent professional—be sought prior to engaging inany of the acts, or circumstances, referred to within thisbook. Further, some facilities prohibit certain objects, foods,materials, and personal items—such as cameras, weaponry,certain types of shoes, cell phones, sticks, video and audiorecording devices, backpacks, bags, containers, plastic,chains, noise makers, and beverages. x
  7. 7. DEDICATIONxi
  8. 8. DEDICATIONDEDICATIONSo often, we don’t acknowledge those in our lives who areimportant to us. It’s sometimes taken for granted. I wouldlike to dedicate this book to my family, the Williams andPerkins families. It was the union of these two families thatbrought me into this world, and it’s up to me to carry on atradition of family and honor. Please allow me thisopportunity to express my love to my brothers and sisters—Garland, Patricia, James Jr., Thomas, Ronald, Robert,Denise; my sons and daughters—Larry Jr., Lamont,LaMond, Nicol, Jonathan, Christina, and Justin; my motherMattie and stepfather James Lacks; my aunts—Mary andMarie Williams; my uncles—Clarkie, Sweet, Love,Cleveland, and Archie; my niece Arnett; Toni Perkins foralways believing in me and for being a great mom; toMarnelle for her dedication to our children and family; tomy grandfather, Charlie Williams; my father, Roy Perkins; xiii
  9. 9. LARRY B. PERKINSmy mentor, Lee Morrow, Ana (Tita) Oronoz and so manyothers who have helped shape my life—thanks for yourencouragement, guidance, support, and leadership. xiv
  10. 10. TABLE OF CONTENTSIntroduction 21Chapter ONE 33The Beginning and Modern LessonsA Roman Historical Perspective Augustus Caesar City Magistrates Ancient Rome – Amphitheater Circus Rituals Gambling Architecture Safety Controls Lanistae (Contractors) Comfort - Spectators and Gladiators Architecture - Seating and Safety Feature /Crowd Maintenance Number of Seats Access Control - Architecture - Crowd ControlChapter TWO 47Fan/Player ViolenceGiants Stadium Snowball Incident and The Palace ArenaPlayer/Fan violence Society Giants Stadium - Unpredictability of weather Snowballs (Ice-balls) xv
  11. 11. LARRY B. PERKINSFan/Player Violence Continued What Went Wrong? A Symbol of Frustration and Danger Infecting Fans Today Aftermath Ever Changing Society Breaking the Invisible Line Fan Perspective Player Perspective History of Fan and Player ViolenceChapter THREE 75Hot Spots, Physical Barriers, and LimitationsA Perspective and Focus When and where do most problems occur? What situations can cause the biggest risk of injury or death? What factors can cause over crowding? What can cause a crowd to get out of control? What impact does energy and pressure have on crowds? How do sound and illumination increase a fan’s risk of injury or death? What factors affect a person’s ability to get themselves out of a “crowd crush” situation? How long does it take to become asphyxiated / lose consciousness? How does weather create problems? How can different types of surfaces affect crowd control? How can direction and elevation affect crowd flow? Escalator Safety and Procedures Escalator Equipment and Procedures. xvi
  12. 12. TABLE OF CONTENTSChapter FOUR 93Preparation Before the Event Before leaving home Clothing and Accessories Prohibited ItemsAwareness and Avoidable Actions Venue Awareness Surging Crowds Sporting EventsChapter FIVE 109Moshing and Mosh Pits Moshing Mosh Pits Body Surfing Mosh Pit Diagram The Facility Manager Death and Injury Rates What to do with young children? The hazards of festival seating? What to do if hurt?Chapter SIX 127Types of Seating Reserved Seating General Admission Seating Festival/Mosh Pit Seating Lawn Seating Accessible Seating (ADA)Chapter SEVEN 135Shaping Crowd Behavior Time (Early/late arrivals/escaping) Space (Crowd density/facility design) Energy (Forces within crowds) Information (Informed decisions) xvii
  13. 13. LARRY B. PERKINSChapter EIGHT 143Standards of Behavior Factors that influence crowd behavior o Guests Makeup o Public Setting o Group Involvement o One-On-One Communication Difficulty o Charged Up Atmosphere o Uninhibited Customers o No Standard of Behavior Conflict of Values Alcohol consumptionChapter NINE 151Responsible Consumption of Alcohol Designated Driver Student Behavior and Tailgate Safety Intoxication Public Awareness Additional Alcohol Management PoliciesChapter TEN 163Venue Rules and Regulations Items that may not be brought into a facility Ticket Scalping Merchandise Proper behavior Assigned seat Aisle safety Entering the venue Retaining ticket stubs Exit/re-entry polices Smoking regulations Loitering and soliciting Trespassing on the premises Parking lots and roadways Open fires (Tailgating) xviii
  14. 14. TABLE OF CONTENTSVenue Rules and Regulations Continued Damaging of shrubs or plants and defacement of the facilities Ticket Back Language (The fine print) Additional rules and regulationsChapter ELEVEN 175PERC System Personal Event Responsibilities Checklist o TAKE o STILLChapter TWELVE 185Types of Concert Protocols Classical Music Pop Rapp Rock and Roll Rhythm and Blues Heavy Metal Country and WesternChapter THIRTEEN 193Case StudyChapter FOUTEEN 203Incident Types and StatisticsChapter FIFTEEN 211Crowd Disasters (A 30-year review)References & Suggested Reading 225 xix
  15. 15. LARRY B. PERKINSIndex 231Author’s Reflections 241Acknowledgements 243About the Author 245 xx
  16. 16. INTRODUCTION 21
  17. 17. INTRODUCTIONCROWD SAFETY AND SURVIVAL: PRACTICAL EVENTAND PUBLIC GATHERING SAFETY TIPSDo you feel safe in crowds? Are you confident that yourloved ones know how to protect themselves in a crowd?Each day, we hear news accounts of injuries and deathswhere people have been involved in some sort of crowd-related incident. Our first reaction may invoke an image ofsomeone attending a sporting event or musical performance.However, the truth of the matter is that crowd-relatedincidents can happen at any time and any place. They canhappen at a house party, on a balcony, at a wedding,standing in line for a special pre-holiday sale, or waiting on atrain platform. 23
  18. 18. LARRY B. PERKINSCrowding, stampeding, trampling, and suffocation, with noavenue of escape, is the number one cause of multipleinjuries and deaths, by human hands, in crowds. On December 18 2001 A free Christmas Gift Distribution Created a Crowd Crush. Four people died, including three children, when a poorly planned and managed government sponsored Christmas gift giveaway program for children went awry in Aracaju… people showed up at a public building for the holiday event…people waiting to receive their free gifts were caught in a craze when one of the main gates opened and triggered a surge and crush, according to local news reports…Consider a person’s chest cavity depressed in incidents suchas this, unable to take air into his/her lungs. This is sure tocause that person to lose consciousness if not abatedquickly, usually in a period some a few seconds toapproximately three minutes. Once a person losesconsciousness, irreversible brain damage may occur due tothe brain’s starvation of air.Crowds can increase or decrease from a few people tothousands in a matter of minutes. Whether during ingress,egress, or in celebration or protest, it is within this periodthat the greatest potential for serious problems arises.Often, young people attending events and other gatheringsare unaware of the danger that lurks within crowds. Their 24
  19. 19. INTRODUCTIONexcitement and attention is usually focused on the event andother activities. They rarely think about what to do, whereto go, or how to protect themselves in crowds.However, we hear more commonly about sports andentertainment incidents, which was the case during twoseparate events in Africa on Sunday, October 10, 2004,where six people lost their lives during soccer matches. Twodeaths occurred following chaos in Monrovia, Liberia, whenthe Lone Stars were defeated 3–0 by Senegal. Fans did notaccept the defeat and started throwing stones onto thefield—pitch—after Senegal scored their third goal. After thegame, the visitors and the referee had to be taken away fromthe stadium under the protection of United Nations troopsand their armored personnel carriers. The angry spectatorsalso smashed the cars of Liberian players and threatenedtheir families.In Togo, four people were crushed to death following astampede after Togos 2006 World Cup qualifier in Lomeagainst Mali on Sunday, October 10, 2004. The mad dashhappened as fans panicked when lights went off justminutes after the end of the game. These were just two suchcases out of many senseless tragedies, which occurred insome African stadiums over that weekend. 25
  20. 20. LARRY B. PERKINSIt is never pleasant to read about death and injury. Africahas had its share in recent years, and we here in the US havehad our share of crowd incidents as well.WHY AND HOW DO THEY OCCUR?Today, many facilities house more people at one time thanlive in the average town. Therefore, facilities hosting thesegatherings face the same challenges as these average towns,only with a few more challenges thrown in.Unlike the family atmosphere in towns, patrons generally donot have the same degree of allegiance to the facility or itsemployees as they have to their own communities. Thissituation can be exacerbated if the outcome of an event isperceived to have been unfair or if the goal or objective hasnot been fulfilled according to the traditions or beliefs of thespectators.Although I’m not a psychologist, I offer this insight frompractical experience, observations, study, and my passion tounderstand crowds and their behavior. Sometimes, peopledo not think about their reactions to situations, whetherpleasant or adverse. But one thing is for certain: Wherethere is an “action,” there is always a “reaction.” Peopleoften celebrate when something significant has beenachieved or retaliate when their dreams and ideals have been 26
  21. 21. INTRODUCTIONshattered. The emotions we feel can produce enormousenergy and excitement within us. Human energy can be apowerful force, which must be released in some fashion. Wecannot hold this energy and/or emotion (joy, excitement,sadness, anger, despair) inside. We must do something torelease it. Our backgrounds, beliefs, and values determineexactly what form of release we choose. This is what makescrowd management so fascinating and challenging. Picture60,000 individuals—all having their own values, beliefs, andbackgrounds—contained in a single building at the sametime. What a feat to anticipate and maintain stability andsafety!Causes of riots, disturbances, emotional outbursts, andfighting can be contributed to “What’s at stake.” Askyourself, “Why aren’t there fights, riots, or crowd crushes atDisneyland, Six Flags, or some other getaway destinations?”One could say that these events have “nothing at stake.”Such events draw people who are generally off work, onvacation, and thus are not in a hurry. They are not there towin a game, a match, a contest, or to celebrate a particularfunction. They’re there for the sole purpose of beingentertained, to relax and experience the pleasantness of thejourney. 27
  22. 22. LARRY B. PERKINSOn the other hand, a loyal, staunch supporter rooting forhis/her alma mater to win the national championship mayhave a “ A lot at stake.” If their team wins, then “they win,”and thus they gain bragging rights for the victory. Sportingvictories give supporters a sense of power and the right toclaim their badge of honor. A team loss may mean that theywill have to face their children, parents, colleagues, orfriends with whom they have been bragging about theirschool, or returning to their local hair salon where livelydiscussions took place a week earlier about their teamwinning the game. They now must hang their heads inshame. Fans love to take on the identity of their favoriteteam. They cheer the victories and resist the losses.Friendly rivals can become bitter enemies as a matter oftradition. It all depends on how closely fans relate to theidentity of the team (or a particular athlete). The team’svictory becomes their victory, and the team’s loss becomestheir defeat.This internalized defeat and humiliation can manifest itselfinto anger. Anger, as with other emotions, is a form ofenergy and needs to be released. However, it is much morevolatile than the celebratory energy. It builds within aperson much faster and carries with it a greater urgency forrelease. This is why anger is often unleashed with such anexplosive power. It is our control, or lack of control, over 28
  23. 23. INTRODUCTIONthis release that may be the problem. Again, we all handleour emotions/energy differently; some people shout, somelaugh, some exercise, some sing, some take it out on others,some fight, and some people cry to rid themselves of thisnegative emotion.On Friday, November 19, 2004, in Detroit, at the Palace ofAuburn Hills, we witnessed one of the worst crowdincidents in US history during the Indiana Pacers-DetroitPiston’s NBA basketball game. Anger was at the heart andsoul of this incident. Players and fans alike could not containtheir anger toward one another when a fan threw a cup ofbeer on Pacers’ Ron Artest, lying on the scores table after abrief confrontational episode with Detroit’s Ben Wallace.This led to an explosion of violence between players andfans when Artest charged into the stands to find and dealwith the person who struck him with the cup of beer.In today’s society, the professional athlete and the fans whowatch them, have a growing dislike for each other. We livein an age of anger. In part, fans resent the amount of moneythese young, predominantly black players make; thisresentment contributes to this anger. Another contributingfactor is disconnection of classes—players no longer live inthe same community as the fan “other than the status of a 29
  24. 24. LARRY B. PERKINScelebrity,”1 and thus they can no longer identify with them.“I have witnessed the change,” says social critic HarryEdwards, a San Francisco 49ers consultant and a sociologistat the University of California. In the past, before playersearned the salaries they do today, they often took secondjobs in the off-season to supplement their income. In effect,they were the average Joe.We must also remember that alcohol and drugs dull oursenses along with our ability to think clearly and rationalize.We may drive 70 miles per hour when we would ordinarilydrive 55. Perhaps we find ourselves on the dance floorwailing away when normally our feet would be glued to thefloor and only the power of a hurricane could get us outthere without this aid. In a similar fashion, people under theinfluence at a large gathering may not react with the samelevel head as at other times. They may start a negativereaction, which affects the entire crowd. In 1982—Cali,Columbia—24 died and 250 were injured in a stampedecaused by a drunken fan.There are many contributing factors to crowd-relatedinjuries. Crowd management professionals are trained toidentify, anticipate, and control many of these variables.1 George Karl, former NBA coach – By Erik Brady, USA TodayNovember 22, 2004. 30
  25. 25. INTRODUCTIONThey are trained to use their physical space and property tohelp manage crowd movement. They are trained on properinteraction and defusing of volatile situations. But it isdifficult to train anyone to read people’s minds, or to knowwhat values, beliefs, or backgrounds each patron brings withthem into an event. We can anticipate and control time,space, energy, and information—but we cannot control howeach person reacts on an emotional level to all of the stimulipresent at an event. This is why it is so important for youto understand how to protect yourself and your loved oneswhen in a large crowd.Crowd safety is something we all must be continually awareof whenever we are around other people and structures.This book will teach you how to protect yourself in crowds.You will learn: What to do if you are caught in an out-of-control crowd. The danger signals of crowds. Where you should position yourself within a crowd. How to escape if you should find yourself down (on the ground) in a crowd. What to do before you leave home. How to gauge the effectiveness of security. 31
  26. 26. LARRY B. PERKINS How much time you have to escape a dangerous situation. How to protect your chest cavity if caught against a railing and other barriers. About the different types of surfaces and what they mean. About the mob mentality.The life you save may be your own, the life of a loved one,or the life of a stranger in need. 32
  28. 28. CHAPTER ONETHE BEGINNING AND MODERN LESSONSC rowd Management has been a concern as far back as the first Olympic Games in Greece and the RomanGladiator and Wild Beast events during the height of theRoman Empire.In modern times, it has been a concern for facilities sincethe 1960s when events began drawing large, active crowds inan era of hippies and free love, with such concerts asWoodstock in Woodstock, New York and the RollingStones Concert in Altamont, California. Since then, publicassembly professionals have spent a great deal of timeeducating venue managers on how to protect theircustomers when they attend events at their facilities.Practitioners have done this through crowd managementand life safety courses taught at industry schools, 35
  29. 29. LARRY B. PERKINSworkshops, and conferences. Until now, there have beenlimited educational suggestions provided to the generalpublic. The “Crowd Safety and Survival-Practical Event andPublic Gathering Safety Tips” is one of the first of its kindto help educate the public on what they can do to protectthemselves from the hazards that can and do occur while incrowds and public gatherings.Here are just a few examples of how tragedies can strikeparticipants and spectators in a crowd setting at concerts.Later in the book, we will examine Fan and Player violenceat sporting events: On the evening of December 3, 1979, in front of Cincinnati Riverfront Coliseum and amid a compacted crowd of thousands of anxious rock concert fans, eleven people died and a nearly equivalent number were injured. These people were crushed and trampled to death as the crowd surged forward against the gates. On December 27, 1992, 9 people were trampled to death in a stairwell with no avenue of escape as a crowd surged forward during a celebrity basketball game at City College of New York. In Salt Lake City, Utah, 3 people died when compressed against the barricades at an AC/DC concert. 36
  30. 30. THE BEGINNING AND MODERN LESSONSOn June 30, 2000, in Demark, 8 people were killedwhile attending a Pearl Jam concert. It had rained muchof the day before. The combination of the pressure andthe mud caused fans to become trapped against thestage barricades.On April 12, 1989, 95 soccer fans perished due toasphyxiation when a large crowd of 10,000 fans tried toenter Sheffield Stadium in Hillsborough, Englandthrough seven turnstiles only thirty minutes beforekickoff.Other deaths occurred at the annual event called TheBig Day Out (BDO), which traveled around the countryfeaturing major international and Australian artists. Thisyear the major act was Limp Bizkit (LB). The event hadtwo stages and approximately 40,000 people were inattendance. Jessica (a sixteen-year-old) was pulled fromthe mosh pit after suffering a heart attack. She wasrevived backstage at the concert and was transported tothe hospital. She remained in critical condition forseveral days and then died.LB had asked for a t-barricade to be set up at thisconcert. The organizers felt that this was notappropriate. After this show, LB left the tour. BDO hadbeen operating for approximately 10 years without anymajor security issues. 37
  31. 31. LARRY B. PERKINSA ROMAN HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVERome looked for ways to entertain its citizens like theGreeks. However, they didn’t pattern their games after theGreeks. They thought that the Greek games were too tameand colorless, and they devised news ones, along with shows(circus). In 264 BC, the first Gladiatorial Games were heldin Rome. Forbade Gladiatorial Munera shows, wild beastgames, as they were known in the west, and Constantineshows as they were known in the east, were held until 523AD. The Elliphtal Coliseum was built in Central Italyaround 100 BC, which became the model for all arenas andamphitheaters to come. The Coliseum, as it became known,was dedicated by Titus in 80 AD.Shows were controlled under the Roman Empire. Onlymagistrates (praetors & quaestors) could hold these eventsin Rome itself. Elsewhere, those wishing to hold contestshad to get official permission. These events were firstformed as part of the funeral rites. They were veryexpensive, and only the rich could afford to host them.The upper classes felt Greeks were degenerates to playgames in the nude. This was a belief held by the poorRomans as well. Both classes wanted Muneras. 38
  32. 32. THE BEGINNING AND MODERN LESSONSRulers and politicians scheduled Muneras (shows) in theamphitheater with gladiators and wild beasts. The rulerswanted to preserve their own power and wanted to addexcitement and luxury to the events. Politicians put onevents to win votes.Rival clubs (racing clubs) were the source of fan adorationand violence. Rival racing clubs were known by their colors.They were paired as Blues and Reds, and Whites andGreens. Cheerleaders shouted joyous cries to prompt theirteam toward greater effort. This caused some violencebetween spectators, who adored their charioteer. They likedtheir agility, physical bravery, coolness under fire, bodilytraining, exploits (even negative public behavior), their largesums of money, their club and gifts from the emperor, andof course, the freedom given to many successful racers.AUGUSTUS CAESARAugustus Caesar was the first of the emperors to useMuneras to consolidate his power. There was no limit to thetypes of shows he sponsored, including luxurious events. Hegave 3 Muneras in his name and 5 Muneras in the name ofsons/grandson.CITY MAGISTRATES…next page 39
  33. 33. LARRY B. PERKINSCity Magistrates outside the city could only give 1 Muneraannually. Inside the city, they could give 2 Muneras eachyear with just 120 gladiators.ANCIENT ROME – AMPHITHEATERIn Rome, some of the first events held were shows called“Munera,” put on at the first amphitheater (Flavion). Thesewere not public games but shows performed by ex-Gladiatorial Fighters. Only those gladiators who had manyvictories were allowed to fight in the amphitheater. Thiswas considered a privilege and an honor. They used woodenswords for these performances, which ran from dawn todusk.The type of Muneras hosted in amphitheater were showssuch as “Hoplomachia—Gladiatorial Combat.” Some showsused mock battle weapons or padded real weapons. Theobjective of the real game was to defeat and kill theopponent. Animal Contests were another type of show.Different animals were used to fight each other; bigelephants were often pitted against a bull. Unarmed menand women were thrown to starving beasts, like theChristians. People condemned to die were often used inthese games. The most enjoyable games were those thatallowed men to be armed (bestiarii) to fight. All fights wereto the death. 40
  34. 34. THE BEGINNING AND MODERN LESSONSThe Romans also liked to play naval games and invented agame called “Naumachia—naval battle.” This was a gamewhere gladiators fought on water. To train, they flooded anarea and learned how to fight in water.CIRCUSCircuses were chariot races. Drivers/fighters were requiredby Augustus Caesar to wear Togas. During the races,spectators were prohibited from eating and drinking. Thepublic could petition the emperor if they wanted to protest avictory and/or decision.RITUALSThe night before the gladiators fought, a big banquet washosted to honor the gladiators. The public was invited tothis feast. On the day of the fight, a parade was held. Thegladiators traveled along the streets in carriages from theirbarracks to the coliseum. Once inside, they would marcharound the coliseum in military dress. As images of deadEmperors were carried past the crowd, as the livingEmperor sat on a couch, flanked by his wife and children.Each gladiator was serviced by a valet who accompaniedhim or her with their weapons. Gladiators saluted Emperorsbefore fighting. Their armor was examined to weed outblunt swords. This was followed by the selection ofgladiators. Lots were drawn to pair off gladiators. The signal 41
  35. 35. LARRY B. PERKINSwas given by the Emperor to begin their fight. This, too,was a fight to the death.GAMBLINGGambling seems to go back to the beginning of time andhere was no exception. Spectators even bet on the type ofweapons given to the two gladiators who were dueling. Itwas not the man but the weapon that would ensure thevictory. Instructors were on hand to ensure that thegladiators fought and didn’t throw the fight. They were tokill their opponent (unless it was a mock battle). Often theinstructor ordered Torarii to incite the killing instinct in themen by yelling “slay,” “strike,” and/or “whip him until hisblood flows.”If a fight was a draw, the next pair of gladiators was called into begin dueling. A gladiator on the ground and not wishingto fight on raised his left arm. This was a signal that hewanted his life spared. The Victor allowed Caesar to makethe choice of whether or not the fallen gladiator’s life shouldbe spared. Caesar consulted the spectators in the stands todetermine the fate of the fallen gladiator. He was allowed tolive if the crowd waved handkerchiefs and raised thumbs up.He would die if the crowd turned their thumbs down. 42
  36. 36. THE BEGINNING AND MODERN LESSONS“Spoils” were given to the winner in the form of silverdishes laden with gold pieces and costly gifts. These weregiven on the spot.ARCHITECTURE SAFETY CONTROLSThe structure was designed to keep the animals away fromthe spectators. Animals were housed underground in cagesmade of masonry (stone/brickwork). A system oframps/hoists was used to either bring the animals up ordrive the animals into the arena.LANISTAEContractors would maintain troupes of gladiators at theirown expense. They maintained training schools and setstrict discipline standards. Many gladiators were slaves,starving common people, ruined sons from good homes(runaways), etc. Lanistae made no distinction betweenthem.In Rome, the Procurators of the Princeps did the job of theLanistae. They got gladiators, wild animals, men who werecondemned to die, and prisoners of war.COMFORT - SPECTATORS AND GLADIATORSIn order to make the coliseum comfortable, strips of a giantawning were fixed to three projecting corbels above each of 43
  37. 37. LARRY B. PERKINSthe windows on the fourth story of the coliseum. Thisprovided shade from the strong sun for the crowd andgladiators. It also allowed the spectators to sit all daywatching the gladiators fight.ARCHITECTURE - SEATING AND SAFETYFEATURE/CROWD MAINTENANCEThe first level of seating was on the Terrace or Podium.These were built about 4 meters above the arena floor andhad a bronze balustrade. The privileged sat in marble seatsin this area. The next seating section was one up fromterrace section for the “privileged.” Women were seatedbelow the terrace/podium.Ordinary people were separated from the wealthy people inthe terrace/podium area by circular, horizontal corridors.The lower two tiers where the ordinary people sat wereseparated from each other by the same circular, horizontalcorridors. The top gallery in the upper portion of thecoliseum was where the poor people sat.NUMBER OF SEATSThe Coliseum seated 45,000 and had standing room spacefor an additional 5,000 patrons. It was elliptical in shape andhad great sightlines. The best seats were facing the Emperorand royal family and their box on the north side of the 44
  38. 38. THE BEGINNING AND MODERN LESSONScoliseum. The best seats on the south sides faced Prefectus,Urbi, and the Magistrates.ACCESS CONTROL - ARCHITECTURE - CROWD CONTROLSloping corridors, which allowed crowds/spectators to enterand exit the seating area, were called “Vomitoria.” Thisterm is still used today. The facility had 80 entrance archesthat adorned it. Four of these entrances near the extremitieswere not numbered and were off limits to the public. Otherarches were numbered I to LXXVI. Patrons would receivenumbered entrance tokens that corresponded with the archnearest their seating section. To gain entry to the facility,people had to go to the correct zone and seating section.Foyers at each entrance provided access to staircases leadingto the vomitories where patrons could go for shade and towalk around. 45
  40. 40. CHAPTER TWOFAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEGIANTS STADIUM SNOWBALL INCIDENT (SAT.,DECEMBER 23, 1995 AND THE PALACE ARENAPLAYER/FAN VIOLENCE (FRI., NOVEMBER 19, 2004)The sports and entertainment industry is changing fasternow than at any point in history. These changes impactboth facility managers and spectators alike. Newtechnologies are being developed that will change andenhance our experiences at arenas and stadiums beyond ourwildest dreams. Some of the recent developments includeelectronic kiosks at malls and supermarkets that allowpatrons to purchase tickets and seats equipped with minicomputers. Soon, patrons will be able to view andcustomize instant replays; explore the stats of their favoriteteams; and stay in touch with their office, friends, and familywhile at the event. In short, facilities are becomingdestination locations. In this new age of the service 49
  41. 41. LARRY B. PERKINSeconomy, the amenities and services now offered at facilitiesare equal to those of a small town—multiple restaurants,shoeshine stands, game rooms, playrooms, cooking lessons,meeting rooms, birthday cakes, celebrations and otherthemed functions, wedding announcements, “enter to win”contests, prizes, promotional give-a-ways, interactive games,business centers, hotel shuttles, and concierge services.SOCIETYToday’s facility manager must be aware of the ever-changingsociety around him/her in order to set policy and train staffaccordingly. Today, we are witnessing the birth of a newbreed of sports fan—one who no longer idolizes the athleteor the hometown boy/girl who once dreamed of making itbig, becoming a star, and supporting their hometown orcountry. Today’s fan no longer idolizes the athlete that madetheir dreams come true through hard work, encouragement,and support but remained humbled. It used to be that whenthe athlete signed with a team, they were there for life—LouGehrig, Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, John Elway,Joe Theismann, Bill Russell, Larry Bird, Bobby Orr. Today,athletes are much more transient, and the professionalsports franchises are in a constant flux between players. Thislack of stability (or constancy) within the teams has added tofan frustration. Additionally, there is a new mix within thefan base of each team. Given the transient nature of our 50
  42. 42. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEsociety, fans move as frequently as their favorite player does.On any given night, chances are you’ll find hometown fanswhose old team is playing their new one. These socialchanges create a new set of challenges, and facility managersmust be prepared to deal with. Among other challenges, thistrend brings with it an increase in violence towards playersand coaches. The snowball incident at Giants Stadium andthe NBA Pacers and Pistons may be only the beginning.GIANTS STADIUM - UNPREDICTABILITY OF WEATHERThe combination of the unpredictability of the weather andlimited time and resources needed to respond to last minutechanges in the weather can often be an explosivecombination for facility managers. For example, a suddendownpour can send thousands of fans rushing onto theconcourse to escape the rain. Gusts of wind can turn trashand refuse into high-powered projectiles. For years,stadiums of the National Football League (NFL), located incities that frequently got heavy accumulations of snow, suchas Green Bay and Buffalo, had to deal with snowballs. Itwas nearly impossible to keep these facilities free of snow.However, because of their experience in dealing with thisproblem (or maybe it was just luck), they never had to dealwith what happened in Giants Stadium on December 23,1995. 51
  43. 43. LARRY B. PERKINSAs the New York Giants and San Diego Chargers werepreparing for a game that meant nothing for one team andeverything to the other, Mother Nature was dumping almosta foot of snow over most of the Mid-Atlantic States. Snowfell heavily from late Tuesday, December 19, into the earlymorning hours of Wednesday, December 20. By the timethe skies cleared, only two days remained before the Giantsand Chargers were set to meet. Snow removal became thetop priority for the Meadowlands staff. With over 30,000parking spaces and miles of roads that serve the threefacilities on the complex, it became apparent that time andsnow removal resources were greatly inadequate. As for theinterior sections of the Stadium, officials decided thatbecause of time and personnel limitations, only the stairs,aisles, and seat surfaces would be cleared. There wereseveral factors that helped lead the management to thatdecision:First, as has already been alluded to, time was extremelylimited, and human resources were already being stretchedto their limits. Even if they had a week to remove the snow,it would have meant working approximately 12 hours a daywith a staff of 500 people to clear the entire interior ofGiants Stadium. 52
  44. 44. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCESecondly, the lack of specialized equipment necessary toremove the snow was an issue. The (NFL) Green BayPackers and Buffalo Bills were accustomed to having toremove snow from their facilities on a regular basis. Theyused long chutes to transport the snow from the seating areato the field surface where it could easily be loaded intotrucks and taken away. Even with these chutes, several daysand a couple hundred extra workers would be required tocomplete the task. It’s also interesting to note that in thecities where it often snowed, not only before but also duringgames, there had never been an outbreak of widespreadsnow related problems prior to the incident at the GiantsStadium.The last factor that influenced the snow removal decisionwas the usual and anticipated makeup of Giants’ fans. Ongame days, the crowd was almost entirely made up of seasonticket holders (86,000). Giants’ season ticket holders hadlong been regarded and made up of white collar, suburbanfans, which were for the most part even-tempered andfiercely loyal to the team and the game. The melee thatensued during this event had never happened before, norwas it expected or anticipated to be part of this crowd’sbehavior. 53
  45. 45. LARRY B. PERKINSBefore we go further, let’s take a closer look at just what didensue that Saturday. It was the last weekend of the season.Many teams were either playing for pride, such as theGiants, or needing a win to ensure or bolster their playoffchance, as was the case with the Chargers. The Giants hadno chance of making the playoffs. They had been eliminatedfrom playoff contention several weeks earlier. Many longtime season ticket holders had decided to remain at home.This had a great effect on the makeup and behavior of thecrowd that attended the game.On this day (December 23, 1995), almost a foot of freshsnow from a storm earlier in the week served as ammunitionfor the largest snowball fight ever experienced in majorleague sports. Thousands of fans unleashed their assaultupon unsuspecting players, coaches, team personnel, andmedia representatives. The New York Giants and NewJersey Sports and Exposition Authority (NJSEA) vowed toseek out those involved and charge them to the fullestextent the law allowed.SNOWBALLSIt all started with a few fans participating in an exchange ofsnowballs on the outside spirals during halftime. During thesecond half, Giants Stadium staff observed, reported, andejected numerous spectators who were throwing snowballs 54
  46. 46. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEat each other. Shortly after that, Dave Brown, the Giants’quarterback, threw a pass that was intercepted and returnedfor a Charger touchdown. That single play provided theimpetus for the fan’s assault on the unsuspecting anddefenseless individuals on the field.Throughout the rest of the game, the players, coaches, andmembers of the media became targets of thousands ofsnowballs hurled from the stands. Early in the second half,an "ice ball" struck the Chargers’ equipment manager, SidBrooks, as he stood on the sideline, temporarily leaving himunconscious. This incident was broadcast over and overagain on newscasts all over the country. Twice during thesecond half, the referees stopped the game when thesituation became too dangerous to continue. However,league officials decided to resume the game in bothinstances due to the playoff implications it held.Despite this incident with the Charges’ equipment manager,and the warning of forfeiting the game, the dangerousconditions continued through the remainder of the game.Stadium staff did their best to curtail the activity, but themob mindset of the crowd could not be reversed. Securitywas able to identify, eject, and arrest those guilty ofparticipating in the melee. By the end of the game, 175patrons had been ejected, and 15 were arrested. 55
  47. 47. LARRY B. PERKINSWHAT WENT WRONG?What went wrong and why did the melee happen? Decisionsmade were based on the usual characteristics of the Giants’faithful fans, with the assumption that the behavior thatensued was not likely. However, the normal, even-temperedfans did not attend the game. The crowd that showed upwas vastly different from the usual crowd. Many seasonticket holders had given their tickets away to friends or soldthem to strangers. In fact, of the 175 patrons ejected, onlyone was the real owner of season tickets. Because those whoattended the game were not fans with pride in the team orloyalty to the game, it was much easier for them toparticipate in the melee.Those ejected included a teacher, a retired police chief, astockbroker, and a lawyer.Fans have long harassed players who did not live up to theirexpectations. The actions of fans during this incident mayalso have spawned a new breed of sports fan by breakingthat invisible barrier between the athlete and fan. They mayhave been unleashing their frustrations of everyday life ontothe athlete no longer idolized and adored. The act of Giants’fans engaged in an all out assault on the players and coacheson the field was unthinkable and may have opened thewindow for similar events to follow. 56
  48. 48. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEA SYMBOL OF FRUSTRATION AND DANGER INFECTINGFANS TODAYThe photo of a fan being ejected from the stadium forthrowing snowballs was depicted in newspapers across thenation. It was reported that he symbolized the frustrationand danger infecting fans today.The Sports Authority had, over the years, for the most part,avoided many major outbreaks of spectator violence andunrest by setting standards of behavior. This wasaccomplished through various tactics, including prohibitingbanners, establishing alcohol management policies, andsetting a dress code for their stadium club participants.Event management wore suits and ties, ushers worebusiness like attire, and their security staff was referred to as“Event Staff.”The Meadowlands has long sent warning letters to fans whowere caught violating the facility’s policies and proceduresor violating the law. This was also the case with thesnowball incident. Further, the Meadowlands, along with theGiants, used all available means to identify and bring thoseinvolved in this incident to justice. The Giants revokedseason tickets and issued stern warnings to the owners ofthose seats where individuals had been ejected for their 57
  49. 49. LARRY B. PERKINSparticipation in the incident. They also revised the seatlicense agreement mailed to season tickets holders,informing the fans that they (Giants’) would hold themaccountable for the actions of their guests. TheMeadowlands NJ State Police Unit investigating the incidentused tapes of the television broadcast, news photographs ofthe melee, their in-house TV production, newspaper articles,informants, and other means to identify and prosecute thoseinvolved.The photo of a man (subsequently identified as Mr. JefferyLange) throwing asnowball was plasteredin newspapers all overthe country and theGiants offered a $1,000reward for his identify,prompting hundreds ofcalls. This led the NewJersey State Police toMr. Lange, where he was charged with improper conduct.Some members of the local media, as well as residents ofnorthern New Jersey, complained that the Giants hadunfairly singled out one individual from an incident with acast of hundreds. But Giants’ officials responded thatpursuing him was important because his photo had become 58
  50. 50. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEa symbol of everything that had gone wrong. Mr. Lange,who had a history of run-ins with the law, including a chargeof assaulting a Police Officer, threatened to pursue legalactions against the Giants, claiming financial and mentalanguish because of having been singled out. He claimedthat the notoriety of this incident led to his dismissal ofemployment, as well as increased stress and social pains.AFTERMATHWhat has been done in the aftermath of this incident todecrease the likelihood of a repeat performance? Initially,The Meadowlands had to deal with the impending Jets gamethe following day (Sunday, December 24, 1995). Their staffworked all night to remove as much additional snow aspossible before game time. Security, State Police, Parking,and Traffic staffing levels were increased as a furthermeasure to discourage similar behavior. Judge GeorgeSavino, from the town of East Rutherford, was brought tothe stadium for the game so criminal complaints could beissued on site and immediately following any incident. Theydistributed flyers to all drivers entering the complex alertingthem of the consequences of their behavior and broadcastpre-recorded messages at the entrances to reflect the same.Lastly, they denied entry and revoked the tickets of anypatron concealing and attempting to bring into the stadiumprohibited items. A complete review and rewriting of related 59
  51. 51. LARRY B. PERKINSpolicies and procedures were to follow. Analyzing thepsychology of fan behavior was included in the process.EVER CHANGING SOCIETYWhat should be learned from this incident? First, facilitymanagers must always be aware and prepared for theunexpected. Weather, among other things, is hard to predict,but this should not allow it to be used as an excuse. Properpreparation in advance of the event, in many cases, isenough to avoid most mishaps. Facility managers mustmake themselves aware of the changing characteristics anddemographics of the sports fan. With the birth of freeagency, for players as well as franchises, fans no longeridolize and adore professional athletes as they did in thepast.Outbreaks of violence and offensive behavior towardsplayers, coaches, and team personnel, unfortunately, areexpected to increase in the coming years with the changingsociety. As we watch people like movie director Spike Lee,who sits courtside, is known for his interaction and tauntingof players at New York Knicks games in Madison SquareGarden. The player is trapped with limited recourse. Leeand others—Calvin Klein, Jack Nicholson, and fans—donot fear retaliation as they unleash relentless assaults onplayers whom they think are not pulling their load or who 60
  52. 52. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEhave done something in society that goes against theirbeliefs. This was the case with Carl Malone, Salt Lake CityJazz, who was suspected of using marijuana.BREAKING THE INVISIBLE LINEThe melee in Detroit on Friday, November 19, 2004,during the Indiana Pacers and Detroit Pistons, NBAbasketball game, is a perfect example of this continuingtrend. An on court skirmish between Detroit’s Ben Wallaceand Indiana’s Ron Artest led to fans encroaching andbreaking through the invisible barrier after observingArtest deliver a hard foul to Ben Wallace. Artest wastrying to prevent Wallace from scoring a basket late in thegame with 45.9 seconds left in the fourth quarter. Wallaceretaliated by pushing Artest in the chest. At that point, theincident was over. Then a Detroit fan, subsequentlyidentified as John Green, took matters into his own hands.He threw a container of beer at Artest in revenge. Thebeer hit Artest, who was lying across the press table whilereportedly giving an interview. This caused Artest to boltinto the stands to accost the fan whom he thought hadthrown the cup. (Artest has a history of acting out on hisfrustrations.) The fan repeatedly told Artest that he hadn’tthrown the cup. However, Artest didn’t believe hisassertion and grabbed the fan, bringing him to the floor.Other players and fans instantaneously joined in the melee, 61
  53. 53. LARRY B. PERKINSsetting off an avalanche of emotions. Fans quickly wentfrom “an individual mindset” to a mob mentality. Theybegan throwing a montage of beer, water, cups, popcorn,chairs—anything they could get their hands on. Some fanswent onto the court. Indiana coach, Rick Carlisle, wasquoted saying, “I felt like I was fighting for my life outthere.” He was not alone; David Harrison said, “There wasa time at the bus where they were telling us to turn off thelights because they were afraid people would shoot at ourbus. We endured the verbal abuse didn’t we?”2Commissioner Stern was quoted as saying, “Thisdemonstrates why our players must not enter the stands,whatever the provocation or poisonous behavior of peopleattending the games.”3FAN PERSPECTIVEFans have always longed to be as close to the playingfield/court as possible, and they pay handsomely to be nearthe athlete. By being close, they feel as if they are part of theaction, as opposed to being a passive participant. Fans thisclose can hear the conversations of the players—theswearing, the jostling back and forth—the squeaking of their2 Jon Krawczynski, Associated Press – Pacers scared by fans,angry at NBA – November 22, 2004.3 By Mark Kreidler, Bee Sports Columnist – Sunday, November21, 2004. 62
  54. 54. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEsneakers on the court, the grunts and groans They feel theoccasional moisture of the players’ perspiration; they catchthe loose ball and the athlete chasing it into the stands. Insome sports, like boxing, they can see the blood pouring outof a boxer; they can see the trainer repairing the athlete’swounds and issuing strategic instructions.Fans calling in to talk shows often state that they are“season ticket holders” as their opening statement. Thisstatement can be taken as “I’m a stakeholder, and I haverights.” This prelude statement can also be viewed as, “Youand your listeners should believe what I’m about to say.”Stakeholders quantify these rights by pointing to severalthings. The venue in which their team plays may have beenbuilt with taxpayer funds. They pay for parking, and in manycases, they even pay for special VIP parking. They ownmultiple seats at thousands of dollars, eat in the restaurants,buy alcohol, and entertain clients at the events.Players often times do not see these inner workings of fans.Many are either unaware or don’t care about the fan’sobjective and perspective. Say what you will about GeorgeSteinbrenner of the New York Yankees. His players arelimited in the amount of facial hair they can wear. Yankeeplayers are viewed as regular American guys—the guy nextdoor. This is also true with NASCAR. The drivers, although 63
  55. 55. LARRY B. PERKINSrich, are down in the thick of it all. You can see them in thegarage helping work on their cars. They talk about the car asif it were a part of them. Race fans can identify with them as“one of us.”The so-called bad boys of the NBA are in contrast to whatfans want in their players. These antics and images of badbehavior are a direct reflection upon the fans, thestakeholders, their town, and the moral fabric ofwholesomeness. The fan feels that with the million dollarsalaries that players are paid comes the responsibility touphold and portray a professional imagine. The sight of RonArtest lying on the scores table may have been viewed asdisrespectful, an insult, a “don’t care” attitude.Latrell Sprewell said, “I have a family I’ve got to feed” inresponse to the $7,000,000.00 offer he received when re-negotiating his NBA contract. We all know people who areworking two and three jobs, and many hours of hard labor,while trying to provide for their family. At their $20,000per year income, they hold no respect for claims ofpoverty, as Sprewell asserts. The least amount of moneylost by any player in the 2004 melee between players andfans was $48,888.00. This was the amount lost by EldenCampbell, who was suspended for one game. His annualsalary was a mere $4,500,000.00. 64
  56. 56. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEPLAYER PERSPECTIVEAs noted above, many players understand the impact thattheir behavior and actions have on the relationship with fansand community. They do everything to maintain a positiveimagine. Gary Jitter (NY Yankees), Dennis Robinson (SanAntonio Spurs), George Martin, Harry Carson (NY Giants),Buck Williams (NJ Nets), Joe Montana (San Francisco49ers), Mia Hamm (Soccer), Jimmy Connors, Chris Everett(Champion Tennis Players), Rod BrindAmour, and EricCole (Carolina Hurricanes Hockey) are just a few that carrythis belief. I’m sure you know many others who are justdelightful people with high moral standards and who may belooked upon as heroes. There are many athletes who stillbring honor to their craft and professional job.Sports Athletes are like Hollywood celebrities. They areoften accosted and hounded by fans who want theirautographs and pictures or by those who want to talk tothem about their sport. Fans are not shy, and many do nothesitate to invade the privacy of their favorite athlete atdinner, at the movies, or wherever they go. The player can’tescape and do things that normal people can do. They arealways in the public eye. Photographers have been known tocamp outside their homes and follow them around to get aphoto. Often these photos are not presented in faltering 65
  57. 57. LARRY B. PERKINSlight. The celebrity can’t make a mistake. They must be ontheir best favor and look the part at all times.Performers, athletes, and drivers alike all fear attacks byfans. They try to get on stage, in the pit, or on thefield/court without incident. Some fans stalk them. Manygroupies campout at their hotels and knock on their door atall hours of the night. There are many reasons fans dothis—from being able to share their adventures with others,to being empowered with the few seconds of fame garneredthrough this interaction, to the chance of marriage, orperhaps an opportunity to share in their wealth.This is, nonetheless, not an excuse to attack a fan, unless theathlete is defending him/herself. There are laws to deal withthese acts of violence. In North Carolina and many states,the law prohibits fans from throwing items onto the courtsand other places.44 North Carolina Criminal Law and Motor Vehicle Handbook 2003EditionCriminal Law - Article 36Offenses against the Public Safety (page 350)Section 14-281.1 Throwing, Dropping, etc. objects at sportingevents. It shall be unlawful for any person to throw, drop, pour,release, discharge, expose or place in an area where an athletecontest or sporting event is taking place any substance or objectthat shall be likely to cause injury to persons participating in orattending such contests or events to cause damage to animal,vehicles, equipment, devices, or other things used in connection 66
  58. 58. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEThe decision by Commissioner David Stern and thecriminal charges being investigated by the prosecutor arecertain to have a much farther reaching impact on allsports than perhaps he and others realize. If the chargesare too weak, it will give fans the ammunition, or a license,to bring life’s issues and frustrations into the sports andentertainment world. A weak sentence will send themessage to fans that it is okay for them to act out againstplayers and teams that they do not approve of or againstplayers and officials that they think did them wrong. It willdiminish the code of conduct and respect that fans shouldhave for professional athletes. It will replace self-controlwith self-expression against society and players alike. Nolonger will fans be able to attend a sporting event for thesheer enjoyment and pleasure of watching a good game ora close contest.Each generation has its on take on issues they considernorms. The chapter on moshing, particularly the LilithMcQuoid story (see Chapter Seven), shows why we attendcertain concerts and engage in certain activities. The factthat fans were waiting at the airport to greet the returningwith such contests or events. Any person violating the provisionsof this section shall be guilty of a class 3 misdemeanor. 67
  59. 59. LARRY B. PERKINSIndiana Pacers from Detroit, as if they were heroes5 isanother indication that these incidents are likely tocontinue. If so, we are certain to face bouts of hooliganismin the worst sense.This decision will determine what the physical layout of theplaying field will look like in the future. Will the courts andplaying fields need to be separated by chain-link fences,moats, clear zones, or other barriers, as many of the soccerfields are in other parts of the world?Why do these stories about the bad guys get more mediaattention than the good guys? If we as a society areinterested in “being and doing good,” then why don’t weact, encourage, and reward good behavior? Do we say onething and want another? Why are the tabloids, a multi-billion dollar industry, so popular? A story by Skip Bayless,ESPN, suggests that spectators and viewers are desperate tobe “shocked and amazed.”6Are racing fans only interested in the race? Do they talkabout the race or the accidents that happen? What do youtalk about around the water cooler?5 Ian O’Connor, USA TODAY - Another sad chapter in behavior -November 20, 2004.6 Skip Bayless, ESPN – Sport’s darkest day? No way, Wednesday,November 24, 2004. 68
  60. 60. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEThe answer to that question will provide you a clue as towhat we as a society are interested in and want to see,despite our cries of “outrage.” Thus, we are at fault forpatronizing, supporting, and rewarding these behaviors.HISTORY OF FAN AND PLAYER VIOLENCEA look back at some of the worst fan/player incidents inAmerica’s sports history returns us to July 11, 1886, whenUmpire George Bradley was hit by a beer mug duringmayhem in the sixth inning of the second game of adoubleheader at Cincinnati. However, this was mildcompared to the melee that took place near the end of theIndiana Pacers-Detroit Pistons game on Friday, November19, 2004. Fans and players threw punches at each other;spectators tossed chairs, beer, ice, and popcorn. Fourplayers (Ron Artest, Jermaine ONeal, Stephen Jackson, andBen Wallace) were suspended indefinitely by the NBA for afracas commissioner David Stern called "shocking, repulsiveand inexcusable."The following chart highlights the history of Fan/playerincident over the past 118 years, and we note that form 1886to 1994 there were a total of 10 incident during this span oftime of 109 years, and from 1995 to 2004 there were 13incidents during this 9 year period, see figure C2.1:77 The Associated Press - November 20, 2004 69
  61. 61. LARRY B. PERKINS Fan/Player Incidents 1886 to 2004 (118-year History) Incident Total Incidents Avg. Period Years Per year 1995 to 2004 9 13 1.44 1886 to 1994 109 10 .091 Total 118 23 .194 Figure C2.1 - This is not a complete list of incidentsSept. 13, 2004 – Texas Rangers pitcher Frank Franciscothrew a chair that hit a woman in the stands and broke hernose.April 19, 2003 – An Oakland Athletics fan threw a cellphone at Texas Rangers outfielder, Carl Everett.April 15, 2003 – A man came out of the stands and grabbedumpire Laz Diaz around the legs during a game between theChicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals.Sept. 19, 2002 – A father and son burst onto the field atChicagos Comiskey Park and slammed Kansas City Royalsfirst-base coach, Tom Gamboa, to the ground, punchingand kicking him.Dec. 16, 2001 – Bottles were thrown by Cleveland Brownsfans and hit players on both teams, as well as other peoplein the stands. Most of the hundreds of bottles were plasticbut many were filled with beer.March 29, 2001 – Tie Domi of the Toronto Maple Leafswrestled with a fan in the penalty box in Philadelphia afterDomi twice poured water on taunting spectators. The fanlunged against the glass and threw a punch at Domi that 70
  62. 62. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEdidnt connect. A glass panel separating the two collapsed,and the fan was pulled into the box by Domi.May 16, 2000 – A fight involving Los Angeles Dodgersplayers and Chicago Cubs fans at Wrigley Field began whena spectator grabbed the hat of Dodgers backup catcher,Chad Kreuter, in the bullpen. Kreuter went into the standsand several Dodgers followed, trading punches with fans.The incident resulted in suspensions for 16 players and threecoaches. Seven of the suspensions were overturned onappeal.Nov. 24, 1999 – Oakland Raiders were pelted withsnowballs, some spiked with batteries, at Denvers MileHigh Stadium. Charles Woodson allegedly threw a snowballthat struck a female fan in the face. Lincoln Kennedy wentafter a fan who hit him in the face with a snowball.Oct. 3, 1999 – A metal object thrown from the stands atMile High Stadium in Denver hit Broncos cornerback, DaleCarter, in the cheek, causing blurred vision and a bruise.Sept. 24, 1999 – A fan attacked Houston right fielder, BillSpiers, in Milwaukee. Spiers ended up with a welt under hisleft eye, a bloody nose, and whiplash.Dec. 23, 1995 – Fans at Giants Stadium hurled dozens ofsnowballs at the Chargers sideline, interrupting a gamebetween San Diego and New York. One snowball knockedSan Diego equipment manager, Sid Brooks, unconscious.Sept. 28, 1995 – Cubs reliever, Randy Myers, was chargedby a spectator who ran out of the stands at Wrigley Field.Myers saw the man coming, dropped his glove, and knockedhim down with his forearm.Feb. 6, 1995 – Vernon Maxwell entered the stands andpunched a fan who heckled him during a game at Portland.He was suspended for 10 games without pay and fined$20,000. He later settled out of court with the fan. 71
  63. 63. LARRY B. PERKINSAug. 27, 1986 – California Angels first baseman, WallyJoyner, was hit in the arm by a knife thrown from the upperdeck at Yankee Stadium. He was not hurt.Dec. 23, 1979 – Boston Bruins forward, Stan Jonathan, washit in the face by an object thrown by a fan. Right wing,Terry OReilly, was harassed by a stick-wielding fan at theend of a 4-3 victory over the New York Rangers. SeveralBoston players, including OReilly and Mike Milbury, wentinto the stands to fight with spectators. Milbury removed ashoe from a fan and beat him with it.July 12, 1979 – A radio DJ blew up disco records in theoutfield at Comiskey Park, and a riot nearly ensued at"Disco Demolition Night" against the Detroit Tigers. Someof the 50,000 fans got into the park for 98 cents if theybrought a record. They tossed them onto the field, threwbeers and cherry bombs, and started fires. Game 2 of thedoubleheader was called off.April 25, 1976 – Chicago center fielder, Rick Monday, tookan American flag from two fans who tried to set it on fire inthe outfield at Dodger Stadium during the fourth inning ofthe Cubs 5-4, tenth inning loss to Los Angeles.June 4, 1974 – Nickel Beer Night in Cleveland drew 25,134fans but turned into a forfeit victory for the Texas Rangers.Players rushed off the field to escape flying beer bottles anddrunken fans before the forfeit was called in the last of theninth inning.April 2, 1969 – Torontos Pat Quinn knocked out BostonBruins great, Bobby Orr, with a vicious check during anNHL playoff game. A brawl broke out on the ice and in thestands, with Quinn leaving the Boston Garden under aheavy police escort.Sept. 10, 1961 – Cleveland center fielder, Jimmy Piersall,was attacked by two fans who ran out of the right-fieldstands onto the field at Yankee Stadium during the seventh 72
  64. 64. FAN/PLAYER VIOLENCEinning of the second game of a doubleheader. Piersallpunched and kicked the two fans before teammates andpolice came to his aid.Sept. 16, 1940 – After an argument at Ebbets Field, whichresulted in a suspension for Dodgers manager, LeoDurocher, a fan punched umpire George Magerkurth.Oct. 9, 1934 – After the Cardinals Joe Medwick slid hardinto Mickey Owen at third base for a triple during WorldSeries Game 7 at Detroit, fans threw tomatoes at Medwickwhen he took his position in left field for the bottom of theinning.July 11, 1886 – Umpire George Bradley was hit by a beermug during mayhem in the sixth inning of the second gameof a doubleheader at Cincinnati. 73
  66. 66. CHAPTER THREEHOT SPOTS, PHYSICAL BARRIERS, AND LIMITATIONSA PERSPECTIVE AND FOCUSThe following perspective will look at crowd safetytechniques from a fan’s viewpoint, focusing on three mainareas: Hot Spots, Physical Barriers, and Limitations Preparation Awareness and ActionThis section addresses various hot spots, physical barriers,and limitations that can challenge a person while in a crowd.Hot spots can present dangerous situations and conditionsthat people may have to face while in a crowd. Physicalbarriers and limitations are areas that can be hazardous andcan trap unsuspecting individuals. Through education and 77
  67. 67. LARRY B. PERKINSawareness, the risk of injury or accidental death can begreatly reduced or prevented all together.The second section addresses self-precautionary steps thatcan be taken before leaving home, upon arriving at a venue,and during the course event. The implementation of thesesafety guidelines not only protects the participantsthemselves but also the venue and fellow human beings.HOT SPOTS, PHYSICAL BARRIERS, AND LIMITATIONS1. WHEN AND WHERE DO MOST PROBLEMS OCCUR? Most injuries and deaths occur when the crowd is on the move—generally during ingress, egress, celebration, protest, and crowd surges. Crowds can grow or descend from a few people to thousands in a matter of minutes. It is within these periods of movement that the greatest potential for a serious problem arises.2. WHAT SITUATIONS CAN CAUSE THE BIGGEST RISK OF INJURY OR DEATH? Surge: Surges occur when the crowd is packed tightly together. A tightly packed crowd moves as a single unit. The pressure and force of the crowd can be overpowering and prevent individuals from moving on their own. When individuals lose their freedom of 78
  68. 68. HOT SPOT, PHYSICAL BARRIERS AND LIMITATIONS movement, stampeding, trampling, and suffocation may occur. Situations such as these can leave unsuspecting participants with no avenue of escape. Surges are the number one cause of multiple injuries and deaths involving crowds.3. WHAT FACTORS CAN CAUSE OVERCROWDING? There are a number of factors that can cause overcrowding and potential crowd safety issues. A list of those factors include: A popular event that’s at its full capacity General admission, festival, or Mosh Pit seating Spectators participating in activities, or activities that encourage the crowd to be spontaneous, such as a television camera pointed at an enthusiastic audience. This happened at an Army/Navy game in Philadelphia where a TV crew pointed a camera at the audience to record their reaction to the game. The chance to be seen on TV caused the crowd to fight for position. This jostling and forward surge caused the railing in front to collapse and those against it were seriously injured as they hit the ground. (Also see Chapter Nine: Shaping Crowd Behavior.) 79
  69. 69. LARRY B. PERKINS Spectators attempting to catch an item thrown into the audience. The demographic makeup of the audience there for a special event or in support/protest of a cause. The energy in a highly charged group and early/late arrivals. The type and amount of space that patrons have in which to move about.8 Time and urgency of the situation.4. WHAT CAN CAUSE A CROWD TO GET OUT OF CONTROL? Panic, protest, celebration, delayed start time, a call to action by the performer (i.e., come on down, let’s go crazy), etc.8 The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and local codesrequire building doors swing outwards. This is done to provide easyescape from within the building should a fire or other catastrophicevent happen within the facility. However, you should be aware thatthis can be dangerous as well. If you’re in a stairwell moving to alower floor, the doors at the base of the stairwell may be closed. Youcould find yourself trapped with no avenue of escape, if the crowd ispushing you from behind.NFPA requires buildings with certain load levels (total number ofpeople it can hold) to provide 7 square feet of space for each persontherein. This amount of space allows you to move freely aboutwithout being subjected to unwanted touching. If your space is tight(like a crowded elevator), you know it’s too dense. This should causeyou to stay alert and seek safety. 80
  70. 70. HOT SPOT, PHYSICAL BARRIERS AND LIMITATIONSIn 1999, during the three-day Woodstock reunionconcert in Upstate New York, fans rioted, raped, setfires, and pilfered merchandise and food. As money ranout, and pass out and return to the venue was limited,fans turned their anger on the facility and those withinit, destroying equipment totaling in the millions.Woodstock 1999 – Photos Courtesy of the Associated Press 81
  71. 71. LARRY B. PERKINS Woodstock 1999 – Photos Courtesy of the Associated Press5. WHAT IMPACT DOES ENERGY AND PRESSURE HAVE ON CROWDS? Crowds are like locomotives, once they are in motion they are hard to stop. The energy in a crowd, like the energy of a moving train, must be released and must be allowed to run its course. Energy is created by the weight and speed of the train and can have a devastating and deadly effect on anything in its path. Like the pressure of a train, the crowd pressure can over take an individual in an instant. Crowd pressure on the chest cavity can be just as deadly as a train on an individual in a matter of seconds. It is important that participants understand the flow of a crowd and avoid being trapped with no avenue of escape. 82
  72. 72. HOT SPOT, PHYSICAL BARRIERS AND LIMITATIONS6. HOW DO SOUND AND ILLUMINATION INCREASE AN INDIVIDUAL’S RISK OF INJURY OR DEATH? Let’s first look at the noise level. The music at concerts is often played at more than 102 decibels. At this heightened level, it can be very difficult to hear someone only inches away. Secondly, a lack of illumination can also make it difficult for a participant to discern safety issues. Further, consider the effects of smoke; it impairs your visibility while at the same time choking the oxygen from the air. The combination of the sound, darkness, smoke, and a thrashing crowd can make it nearly impossible to hear and see a person who has fallen or who is injured.7. WHAT FACTORS AFFECT A PERSON’S ABILITY TO GET THEMSELVES OUT OF A “CROWD CRUSH” SITUATION? This depends on a variety of factors. The pressure and aggressive movement of the crowd, the physical barriers the person may be faced with, and their personal physical condition all contribute to a person’s ability to escape a crowd crush. A person with poor health or physical challenge, or a young person whose physical body has not fully grown, are more at risk than others. Any combination of these three factors can result in a fan being faced with an emergency situation. 83
  73. 73. LARRY B. PERKINS8. HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO BECOME ASPHYXIATED / LOSE CONSCIOUSNESS? It can take anywhere from a few minutes to a matter of a few seconds to lose consciousness if a person’s oxygen supply is cut off. Again, the main areas to be aware of are crowding conditions, physical barriers, space limitations, and one’s physical condition and age.9. HOW DOES WEATHER CREATE PROBLEMS? Every type of weather (hot weather or cold weather, rain or snow, thunderstorm or hurricane) has its own unique set of crowd management issues that need to be assessed on an individual basis. Participants must assess the weather, facility/grounds, and the activities in which they will be participating. They should bring items that will protect them from the elements, to which they may be exposed. Examples of items that a person might want to bring include medications, water, raincoats, sunscreen, heavy jackets, and proper footwear dependant on the situation.10. HOW CAN DIFFERENT TYPES OF SURFACES AFFECT CROWD CONTROL? A person’s awareness of different types of surfaces and the hazardous situations that may result can help to 84
  74. 74. HOT SPOT, PHYSICAL BARRIERS AND LIMITATIONS combat safety issues before they develop. Concrete floors can become slippery when wet from spilled drinks, perspiration, and condensation. Therefore, if the floor is concrete, patrons should wear rubber soled and/or slip resistant shoes. A person should also stay away from debris and other objects lying on the floor. They can point these items out to security to help prevent tripping hazards. Outdoor events can pose a problem when held on uneven terrain or on rain-soaked soil. Both of these surfaces can cause slips and falls because of unsecured footing.11. HOW CAN DIRECTION AND ELEVATION AFFECT CROWD FLOW? Participants should be aware of stairs, escalators, hills, or any other areas where crowd motion can change quickly. Whenever there is a change in direction or elevation, crowds will either slow down or speed up abruptly. This causes a “hot spot.” Because of the abrupt change in direction and/or elevation, people will take on a different stride than when walking at a normal pace. This sudden change creates an imbalance of footing. Another factor to weigh into the equation is the fact that the back of the crowd may not be aware of the change in direction and/or elevation ahead. If they keep moving forward at the same pace, these patrons 85
  75. 75. LARRY B. PERKINS will collide with the slower people in front. Their speed will create a force exerted on those in front. Upon impact, the stronger side of the two forces will determine the direction of the crowd. The crowd will either push forward, push backward, or if both forces are equally balanced, the energy will be evenly dispersed. Another dangerous situation to be on the lookout for is the forward crowd surge. This is when most accidents occur.12. ESCALATOR SAFETY AND PROCEDURES Escalator safety is a major concern not only in sports and entertainment venues but also in any facility that has escalators. Some of the common dangers associated with escalators involve loose shoelaces, long pants, hanging straps, and the tips of shoes getting caught in the moving treads. This prevents both the individual whose item is caught and those behind him from exiting and escaping the escalator at the appropriate moment. As a result, a pile occurs that could cause serious injury. Further, persons reaching down to pick up a fallen item may find their fingers and hand trapped and mutilated 86
  76. 76. HOT SPOT, PHYSICAL BARRIERS AND LIMITATIONS between the treads and the side wall or in the teeth of the bottom or top plate.9 An example of an escalator incident happened at Coors Field where the escalator malfunctioned. It was reported that at least 20 people were injured when a crowded escalator at Coors Field suddenly accelerated after a Colorado Rockies10 game on Wednesday, July 2, 2003. Cherri Brownfield was on the escalator, near the end, when it sped up. "Its like it had no brakes and everybody was just piling up at the end of it," she said. "People were just falling on each other." The escalator was carrying fans from the upper level to the street after Colorado won. "I saw peoples heads all hitting each other," she said. "I heard peoples bodies banging against that thing."9 “Injuries suffered in an elevator or escalator accident may resultin the amputation of a limb or extremity. The AmputeeCoalition of America defines amputation as ‘the absence of anypart of an extremity (arm or leg) due to surgical or traumaticamputation.’“Traumatic amputation is a common injury during elevator orescalator accidents. When the accident itself results in theimmediate loss of limbs or extremities, it is considered to be atraumatic amputation.”By the Law firm of Edgar Snyder & Associates10 Associated Press/CBS Broadcasting Inc. Thursday, July 3, 2003. 87
  77. 77. LARRY B. PERKINS Nick Nossinger was watching the fireworks and saw the accident. "People were just sliding down like an avalanche," he said. In addition to malfunctions, there are other safety concerns of which you should be aware: Escalators should never be used as a playground, amusement ride, or for unsafe activities, such as strollers, carts, skateboards, or wheelchairs (see figure C4.1). In researching escalator safety, I discovered that some people who use wheelchairs also ride escalators. Despite the safety warning issued by others who use wheelchairs, some see no harm in doing so. Consider this bulletin board discussion regarding the Coors Field and a Gunn Arena escalator malfunction. (Their names have been changed to protect their privacy.) RIDER “I love riding escalators! It makes me feel like Im everybody else. The first time I ever saw anyone do it was on Atlantas light rail system, MARTA. 88
  78. 78. HOT SPOT, PHYSICAL BARRIERS AND LIMITATIONSIn the [Airport] terminals, youve got to fight a lotof strollers and just lazy people to get on anelevator. Once you get on you get to enjoy thestench of putrid urine. Im just trying to figure outhow to ride an escalator in my Jitney.Also, I love freaking out mall managers andsecurity guards when they see me coming downan escalator. Forget this stuff of having to go tothe center of the mall when the store you want isat the top of the escalator.I got ambushed at a newer mall. Their escalatorsare too narrow for a wheelchair.As for going down an escalator—go downbackwards. As long as I can hold on to thehandrails, I dont care if I lose the chair. I figurethat if its a choice of me and the wheelchairtumbling down onto the rider below or just thechair falling, I think the latter is the better choice.All in all Ive never had a problem, a close call, orever been scared.” 89
  79. 79. LARRY B. PERKINS RESPONDENT “If you get hurt on the escalator that’s cool, you have made a choice and are prepared to live with the results of it. However, do you all consider what damages could be done to other people on the escalator? They are not part of your decision making process, but certainly have a major stake should you take a tumble. If you are risking personal injury to them, it is no longer a purely individual situation. This is why society establishes norms. We had an escalator accident at Coors Field last year. I cannot remember what the exact injury was, but I do remember that there was an amputation of something—could be toe or even a foot [I] do not remember. This happened to a downstream domino that was a senior citizen, I think it was a lady but cannot remember that either. Having noted the above, I was not always an old crippled coot. I rode both dirt bikes and street machines. [I] took a tumble at 50 + MPH. My helmet saved my life. The scraping on the side actually wore 90
  80. 80. HOT SPOT, PHYSICAL BARRIERS AND LIMITATIONS through the outer layer. Had I not been wearing it 30 years ago, Ben would not have had her old pen pal here. My wifes bosss son was not so lucky. He was the son of the head of a hospital and a third year medical student. Riding a skateboard and took a fall. Three days later, his father knowing he was brain dead made the decision no parent wants to make, and pulled the plug. Organ donation was the only positive to this event. Therefore, if you want to get rambunctious, then at least wear some safety gear. That way, you will still be around to talk about your spill. I took mine on the street, and on the sides of a hill, but lived to talk about it. Hope you can do the same.” The accounts of these of the foregoing incidents remind us of the dangers that lurk within—not only for those who use wheelchairs and skateboard users, as delineated in this story. Safety, no matter what the activity, must always be at the forefront of our minds.13. ESCALATOR EQUIPMENT AND PROCEDURES All escalators are equipped with emergency stop buttons. It you find yourself entangled on an escalator or trapped 91
  81. 81. LARRY B. PERKINS on one, yell out, “We’re trapped. Push the RED Stop bottom at the top or bottom of the escalator!” then turn and yell, “Go back!” This alert should then be followed by attempting to avoid the person who’s trapped and getting to safety and help for those trapped.Figure C4.1 92
  83. 83. CHAPTER FOURPREPARATION BEFORE THE EVENTBEFORE LEAVING HOMEBefore arriving at an event, here are some steps that allpersons should take that can help them stay safe while inlarge crowds. First – it is a good idea to tell family or friends where you will be. If you are attending a ticketed event like a concert or game, leave a copy of your ticket along with other details with someone at home. If an incident occurs, they will know how to locate you to make sure you are okay. Use a buddy system to look after each other. 95
  84. 84. LARRY B. PERKINS If it is hot, stay hydrated, especially if outdoors. If an incident does occur and it is shown on television or broadcasted on the radio, call home to let your family know Photographer unknown that you are okay.CLOTHING/ACCESSORIES: ("What You Wear or DontWear Can Be Very Important") Wear something bright and easily seen by friends like a shirt or coat. Dont wear spikes, chains, or anything that can get caught or cause harm to yourself and others. It’s a good idea to wear a hat if outside in hot weather. Try not to carry a purse. Make sure that your shoelaces are tied. If you lose your shoes or other items in a crowd surge or stampede, dont stop to pick them up. Carry a cell phone, which you can use to call security or 911. Carry a "personal alarm" like a whistle or penlight. Carry ID and medical information. 96
  85. 85. Awareness and Avoidable ActionsPROHIBITED ITEMS Some facilities prohibit certain objects, foods, materials, and personal items, such as cameras, weaponry, certain types of shoes, cellphones, sticks, video and audio recording devices, backpacks, bags, containers, plastic, chains, noise makers, beverages, etc. It’s a good idea to check with the facility prior to going to the venue to determine what you may bring.AWARENESS AND AVOIDABLE ACTIONSVENUE AWARENESS: ("When you get to the event, beaware of your surroundings...") Avoid being first in line when waiting for the gates or doors to open. This is where crowd pressure can build (see figures C4.1–4). Know where the exits and first aid centers are located. Locate an alternative exit. The closest exit might not always be the best one to use when stuck in a crowd.WHY ALTERNATE ROUTES? Once in a high density, panicked crowd, it’s nearly impossible to escape. Upon entering a facility, room, or platform look for alternate exits. Consider these 97
  86. 86. LARRY B. PERKINS accounts of blocked exits, which caused panic and a stampede. Jodi Wilgroren of the New York Times11 reported that 21 people were killed and more than 50 were injured in a stampede during the early hours on February 17, 2003, after pepper spray was released nearby to break up a11 Epitome Night Club Stampede VictimsCHICAGO, February 17, 2003 - Victims of the fatal incident at theEpitome Night Club, where 21 people were trampled and crushed todeath while trying to escape pepper spray or Mace that securityguards had sprayed on the dance floor.Of those who were killed, 12 were female and nine were male. Thevictims ranged in age from 21 to 43. Nita Anthony, 24 Robert Brown, 31 Demetricita Carwell, 23 Bianca Ferguson, 24 Kevin Gayden, 24 Debra Gill, 29 Danielle Greene, 23 Chanta Jackson, 26 David Jones, 20 Teresa Johnson-Gordon, 31 Charles Lard, 43 Latorya McGraw, 24 Antonio Myers, 34 Nicole Patterson, 22, of Chicago Nicole Rainey, 24 Dashand Ray, 24, of Hillside Charita Rhodes, 19, of Chicago Eazay Rogers, 21, of Chicago Damien Riley, 24 Maurice L. Robinson, 22 Michael Wilson, 22 98
  87. 87. Awareness and Avoidable Actions fight between two women at the E2 night club in Chicago, Ill. A few seconds later, arms jabbed into the air in distress, pointing toward the already overstuffed stairwell. A dungareed leg, a lettermans jacket, and the soles of sneakers flew into the air, as bodies were propelled by the surging crowd. Security cameras showed that the front door remained open. However, “the crush on the narrow staircase was so intense that a pile of bodies formed at the bottom."1212February 18, 2003 New York Times, By JODI WILGORENEpitome and E2, in a 16,000-square-foot landmark building twoblocks from the McCormick Place convention center, opened in May2000, replacing previous nightclub incarnations, the Clique andHeros. E2 sits above the upscale steak and seafood restaurantEpitome. The club, known for raucous dance parties, had beenordered shut in July because of 11 violations of fire and buildingcodes.The first firefighters, responding to a 911 call about a pregnantwoman in distress, arrived at 2:24 a.m. to discover the mob scene.Survivors of the stampede here described a chaotic and franticnightmare, with people gasping for air amid the sprays as theyclimbed on top of each other down the stairs."I couldnt breathe, I was in there searching for air," said ChandraSpencer, 30. "There were so many people who died in front of me.Them guards killed them people. There was no need for them to dowhat they did."It [E2 Nightclub] was the nations deadliest stampede incident inrecent years. In December 1991, nine people were crushed to deathin a stampede at a celebrity basketball game at City College in NewYork. And in December 1979 in Cincinnati, 11 people were killedtrying to get into a concert by The Who. Death tolls have been largeroverseas, with 53 people killed in Minsk in 1999 as they fled a rockconcert. 99