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Crowd management


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Crowd management

  1. 1. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 1 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008 CROWD MANAGEMENT PASSENGER MUSTERING AND CROWD CONTROL 1) Why is crowd management necessary? An emergency is any situation, which has the potential to cause serious injuries, and which requires immediate action to handle it. Crowd management is used to try to prevent accidents and to make sure an effective response can be put into action if there is an accident. Thorough training with a professional approach to your duties may help to save lives. Being aware of behavioral patterns can help the understanding of why groups of people act in certain manners, and it can help you to decide how best to handle the situation. Sometimes it only needs a minor incident to trigger a sequence of events in crowded areas, which can rapidly escalate out of control. BASIC INSTICTS Human beings are sociable. It`s a basic instinct to meet and socialize whether to have a meal, enjoy a sports match, for religious ceremony or simply to get from one place to another. Getting together for a common purpose gives the individual a sense of identity and can increase their enjoyment levels an event. But as well as enjoyment, being in a crowd can sometimes encourage other emotions too:  Aggression Anger.  Claustrophobia Courage.  Disorientation fear.  Panic selflessness. “Fight or flight” Some of the emotions listed above are caused by the body`s natural responses to unusual stress. The flow of adrenaline increases, which heightens the feeling of excitement or fear. This is sometimes referred to as “The fight or flight syndrome”. The blood flow increases to the muscles and brain and the heartbeats faster, preparing the body to face whatever danger lies ahead. In stressful situations we do not always act rationally. The “Fight or flight” Instinct is strong and can lead to strange reactions. What do you think is more likely to happen in an emergency- will people panic of will they simply do nothing.
  2. 2. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 2 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008 Believe or not, they are more likely to do nothing! Most passengers´ ideas of a shipboard emergency come from the unreal world of cinema. Movies about the titanic and other disasters emphasize the panic and hysteria because they add drama to the story and after the entire movies audience is paying to be entertained. In fact eyewitnesses of major disasters report that the majority of people continue to do whatever they were doing before the emergency began. The difficulty you as a passenger manager may have is persuading passengers that the emergency directly involves them and to persuade them to stop what they are doing and follow your instructions. CURIOSITY It is also human nature to be curious. Sometimes people will go towards a dangerous situation to see what is occurring. Take for example vehicle drivers, who have tendency to slow down to look at accidents. This is not only hampers the emergency services but can also cause other accidents and has coined the phrase “rubbernecking”. This basic instinct or “curiosity” is something you will have to overcome in managing where and how people evacuate an area. PANIC A small minority of people will panic you must immediately try to prevent these passengers from hurting themselves or others, and to prevent their sense of panic from spreading and affecting the already heightened emotions of the other passengers. ANGER Some people react to stressful situations by becoming angry. Sometimes calm reassurance will defuse a situation but sometimes in can be necessary to separate angry passengers from the group if it looks like their anger could potentially agitate others. Whatever the reason, stay calm and do not get angry yourself. Angry people may not be thinking rationally. Keep calm, and be prepared to repeat instructions or messages firmly, call for assistance if you feel the situation is getting out of hands. CONFIDENCE By remaining calm using a confident voice and body language you are able to reassure everyone that the situation is under control. Depending on what your passenger management role is, you may need to approach nervous passengers to reassure them, of if you cannot leave your post, to indicate to another member of staff. Remember that whatever your normal relationship with passengers, during an emergency it is your instructions that have to be listened and adhered to. Therefore, be prepared to be firm and insist that they do as you say. Not every one finds it easy to take control of a situation and to portray a self-confident image. This is one of the reasons why it is so important to take part in all the emergency drills arranged onboard your ship. Although someone senior will be appointed to take responsibility for passengers muster stations, in an emergency all members of staff must be prepared to take charge if needed.
  3. 3. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 3 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008 SAFETY AND HEROICS Emergency situations can bring out “the best” in people. This can mean they show consideration towards their fellow passengers, others might perform heroic acts with total disregard for their own safety, which would normally be considered totally out of character. Safety must always put first, not only those of the passenger`s in your care, but for your own personal safety too. You have a big responsibility with a lot of people relying on you for guidance and support. In an emergency situation you must assess hazards and risks to determine what control measures are already in place and what else can be done to reduce these risks if possible. WHAT TO DO IN AN EMERGENCY. Raising the alarm It is essential that you know how to raise the alarm correctly and to alert the passengers. The following guidelines will assist, but you must make sure you know what your company`s procedures are as they may be different. If you discover fire (or another emergency), you should: 1. Raise the alarm by pressing on the alarm buttons (usually red) situated around the ship. This will alert the bridge but not sound the alarm bells. The bridge should be able to identify your location. 2. Calmly evacuate the immediate area making sure everyone is out of his or her cabins. 3. Close the doors of the affected areas to contain the fire and smoke, including if possible the fire doors. 4. When the area has been evacuated with the doors closed, contact the bridge and inform them of the following:  Who are you  Where you are  Where the fire of the emergency is  What action you have taken  Anything else which you feel to be relevant The bridge can call an assessment party to your location. The information you give is very important, so if possible stay near to this location without endangering your own safety until you have spoken to the assessment party. SIGNALS The two signals, which are likely to be used and heard to call the crew to their emergency stations, are as follows: 1. General emergency signal- seven short blasts followed by one long blast on the ship general alarm (whistle, loud speakers, lights and rings). 2. Crew alert-the continuous ringing of the ship alarms (make sure you know what you are supposed to do when you hear the signals)
  4. 4. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 4 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008 CLOTHING Some companies issue highly visible clothing, such as baseball caps to the stair guides and muster stations personnel. When you are called to your station by one of the signals, you should collect and wear your life jacket. This may be marked either guide or muster, your highly visible clothing (if issued), warm sensible footwear. If you require any medication, this should also be taken with you. SAFETY & HEROICS Emergency situations can bring out “the best” in people. This can mean they show consideration towards their fellow passengers, offering assistance to someone less agile than themselves or with young children. Other might perform heroic acts with total disregard for their own safety, which would normally be considered totally out of character. Safety must always put first, not only those of the passenger`s in your care, but for your own personal safety too. You have a big responsibility-with a lot people relying on you for guidance and support. In an emergency situation you must assess hazards and risks to determinate what control measures are already in place and what else can be done to reduce these risks if possible. STAIRWAY GUIDES-PREPARATION Stairways guides should go their stairway location and take up their positions. You should check that the position is safe for yourself and for your passengers. If you find on arrival that the stairway is full of smoke, close the area off using the fire screen doors. You should then stand outside the stairway and be prepared to guide the passengers to another safe stairway. You should also report the situation to your section leader, who will ensure the message, is passed via the zone commander to the bridge. If you are prevented from getting anywhere near your stairway, listen for announcement, which will inform you of your duties. You also remain at your position until you given other instructions. It is likely that announcement similar to the following will be made:  “The passengers have been mustered. Relocate to you designated passenger muster station”  “The emergency has been dealt with and you can now stand down” MUSTER PERSONNEL-PREPARATION When you hear the alarm you should go to the passenger muster station and prepare the room for the arrival of passengers. It is vital that when the passengers arrive, someone is in charge and can be easily seen. Although there will someone designated as “in charge” another one as “second in charge”, it is possible they may not be there yet. If neither of these persons is there, the first person to arrive must take charge until one or both of them arrive. This means taking over their position and carrying out their duties.
  5. 5. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 5 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008 All the personnel within the room must work as a team and not as individuals. The officer in charge needs to be able to rely on everyone in the room being able to use their initiative and to follow the procedures practiced during the drills. Do not expect to receive detailed instructions from them, as you should know the duties required of you. It may be a very short time before passengers arrive at the muster stations. You should ensure that the room is ready to be checking that the entrances and exits are clear of obstructions and that there is a clear access to the seating areas. If smoke, fire or similar dangers affect the room, close the door to try to contain the problem and prevent any passengers from entering. Report the situation to the muster control party. MUSTER CONTROL PARTY On joining each ship you should find out where the muster control party is located, usually it is close to the muster stations. The muster control party will be in radio contact with the purser, who is responsible for the overall muster of passengers whilst being assisted. The purser and his assistant will be in radio contact, whilst also keeping them informed. PASSENGER MUSTERING The bridge sounding the general emergency signal will muster passengers. When passengers hear this they should return to their staterooms or cabins, collect their lifejackets, warm clothing, a head covering and any medication they need. They should then procedure to their muster stations carrying their lifejacket, which will have a number, attached indicating the station they should go to. They should not wear their lifejacket. If passengers are unable for any reason to get to the staterooms or cabins, they should be directed to the muster stations where they will given a life jacket. Spare lifejackets are stored near the muster stations for this purpose. It is the pursers responsibility to organize the delivery of lifejackets to where they are required. It is important that you know where the spares are kept, including those for children. THE JOB OF THE STAIRWAY GUIDES Your role is to assist and ensure that there is a smooth and orderly flow of passengers to their muster stations. Instruct them to keep to the right hand side of the stairways and passages. You may need to offer assistance to some whilst being prepared to reassure them in a calm and confident manner. You should also watch out for an uneven flow of movement and be prepared to slow passengers down to avoid overcrowding and thus the potential of an accident. If your company uses letters on passengers lifejackets to identify which muster station they belong to, you must keep a watch for a passengers who need redirecting to the correct station. If this is not possible reassure them, that these procedures were well practiced, and arriving at the wrong muster station will not cause them a problem. Also as a stairway guide you are expected to know in addition to your other duties the routes from the muster stations to all survival craft embarkation points.
  6. 6. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 6 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008 Once passengers are assembled in their muster stations, Stairway guides will hear a broadcast announcement to go to their assigned muster stations in order to assist the muster personnel. THE JOB OF MUSTER PERSONNEL As muster personnel your job is to ensure there is an orderly arrival and progression of passengers to the muster station. The passengers should be moved into the room quickly but without a rush. Make sure that the seating areas away from the doors are filled first and that there are no gaps left as it will be more difficult to direct passengers to these areas at a later stage. Passengers must be asked to remain quiet in order that they hear the instructions given by the officer in charge, or by the P.A. announcement. It is likely however that the captain will keep everyone informed from time to time by using P.A: system. Passengers should not be allowed out of the muster stations unless with the explicit approval of the officer in charge, and even then it is unlikely permission would be given. If they have pressing reason for leaving such as lost member of the family, or medication needs. You must assist as much as possible, whilst being firm that they must stay in the muster station. You may also need to repeat some of the information from the officer in charge as this will help to reassure the passengers, as some will need reassurance that others. It is very important that the information you give is the same as given by the officer in charge, therefore is you are unsure about certain aspects you must ask for clarification from the officer in charge. Remember to always be aware for passengers of groups that have special needs ensure their escort knows what is happening so they can communicate this to their group. Also as a member of the muster personnel you are expected to know in addition to your other duties, the routes from the muster station to all survival craft embarkation points. LIFEJACKETS Passengers should have brought their lifejacket with them, some way already be wearing them. You should explain that they may be at the muster station for quite some time and that they will be more comfortable sitting down without the wearing of the lifejacket. You may also need to explain that you are wearing yours in order that you can be identified as crew and be easily seen. There should be spare lifejackets available at all muster stations for passengers’ use who have not been able to retrieve them for the cabin. If necessary ask the officer in charge to contact the muster control party who will arrange for additional supplies to be delivered to your muster station. RE-UNITING PASSENGERS Passengers, who have become separated from their partners, families of traveling companions may approach you. You should assist where possible in helping to locate them within the muster station, of if necessary to ask the officer in charge to contact the muster control party to determinate if they have gone to another station. Any passengers who arrive at the wrong muster station should be relocated if possible, if they cannot, welcome them into your group.
  7. 7. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 7 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008 PREPARING FOR THE POSSIBILITY OF EVACUATION The officer in charge will explain to the passenger that the muster station must be prepared JUST IN CASE. So that in the unlikely event of an evacuation everybody should know what is expected of him or her. The passengers will be told that it is extremely unlikely that it will be necessary to abandon the ship, but procedures are carried out just in case. DONNING LIFEJACKETS & FORMING A CROCODILE 1) Making sure that you are standing where passenger`s can easily see you, and that you and the other guides are positioned equally around the room. As the officer in charge explains who to don a lifejacket, demonstrate each step. Make sure passengers stay seated. If any of the passengers indicate that they have not understood something, be prepared to explain again. 2) The officer in charge will then ask the passengers to stand and put on their lifejackets as they go through the procedure again. Be prepared to assist. 3) The passengers will then have the evacuation procedure explained to them. You must reassure them where necessary that that this is JUST IN CASE measures and that these procedures have been well practiced. Do not say how many passengers will go into each group as they may try to calculate how many groups are ahead of them, which may cause them to worry. 4) You may be asked by the officer in charge to help demonstrate when they explain the evacuation procedure. Help passengers by demonstrating the “CROCODILE” as the officer in charge describes how they should hold on with one hand to the loop on the back of the lifejacket of the passengers in front of them. SEASICK TABLETS These help to reduce the effects of the seasickness and dehydration and should be swallowed before the ship is abandoned (they take 30 minutes to become effective). When directed by the officer in charge, collect a supply from your group from the muster station box. Do not issue them until instructed to do so. EVACUATION TO BOATS If evacuation is to commence, the purser will inform the officer in charge. If you are designated to guide a group, you need to pick up from the muster box the numbered indicator or batons that identify your survival craft, together with the seasickness tablets. The door checkers will count out your personal group and inform you when you need to embark the lifeboat. If you are leading the group, steady pace and check behind you from time to time to ensure that everyone is keeping up. The guide at the rear will ensure that the group stays together.
  8. 8. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 8 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008 If you are part of the passengers’ assistance party, reassure them that they will be taken to the crafts last in order to avoid others passengers being loaded over them. Reassure them that they are not being forgotten of that they are any less important that the rest. Remember that operational crew will be assigned to each craft and therefore you will not be told to go to the survival crafts unless they are ready for embarkation. The operational crew will be in the craft when the passengers arrive. The craft should only be loaded up to a maximum capacity with the passengers, and escorts, as there are more than sufficient crafts for all passengers, escorts and crew. THE ROLE OF THE OFFICER IN CHARGE If you find yourself needing to take charge because the designated officer and his deputy have not arrived at the muster station, you must be prepared to take control of the room and maintain that control. You must:  Make your presence known to everyone in the room  Stand on the stage of table, use a microphone of megaphone if available  Be confident in voice and manner so everyone listen to you  Remain calm and relaxed and you will calm the people in the room  Keep your instruction short and to the point  Remind passengers that drills and practices are carried out regularly; therefore the system has been tried and tested.  Ask people to be patient until everyone is accounted for  Do not leave your position, People should come to you  Keep repeating that this procedure has been practiced many times and that getting passengers into the muster stations is a precautionary measure  Identify passengers who may be difficult and cause trouble, including those who could be drunk, injured, hysterical or distraught.  If you do have difficulty with any of these groups, assign somebody specifically to look after them and: 1) Have them moved to a quitter area of the room, away from the main crowd. 2) Try to keep them calm. 3) If necessary call the muster control party. KEEPING PEOPLE INFORMED  You must keep people informed, in order to avoid speculation, which can make the situation worse.  Gain guidance from messages you hear over the P.A. system  Explain to the passengers where the problem is and that it is being dealt with.  Use to your advantage the number of messages being broadcast, by saying something like; “as you can hear, we have a lot of different parties who are being put into action immediately”. This is a standard procedure implemented in order to be prepared, as we prefer to take these measures now so that we are prepared for any eventuality, and that we can be one step ahead all the time”
  9. 9. Miguel Diaz Medina. Page 9 of 9 14 June 2001 Crowd MGMT Shipboard. Last update 14 August 2008  Only tell the passengers what you know to be correct. If you are unsure of an element concerning the situation, do not simply guess try to find the answer.  Try to find passengers who can assist with groups with whom you may have a communication problem. PREPARING FOR THE POSIBILITY OF EVACUATION  Tell passengers that the muster station is going to be made ready “Just in case” there is a need to evacuate.  Reassure them that is extremely unlikely that it will be necessary to abandon ship, but we must all be prepared.  Remind how to don a lifejacket.  Make sure the passengers are sitting down observing ensure that there are enough demonstrators around the room.  Ensure that everyone can see properly. If you have enough time, go slowly through the procedure and make sure everyone understands what he or she must do.  Get the passengers to stand up and put their lifejackets on.  Go through the procedure again.  The muster station personnel should help as required.  Remind the passengers of the general emergency drill that they participated in, and how the evacuation will take place.  Practice the drill by actually taking passengers to the lifeboats so they are prepared in the unlikely event it becomes necessary to go the lifeboats.  Demonstrate the “crocodile” by asking passengers to form a line and to hold on with one hand to the loop on the back of the lifejacket of the person in front.  Ask muster personnel to assist if required.  Explain that in order to control the speed of the evacuation they will be sent to the boats in groups.  Don`t go in details of how many are in each group, as passengers may worry as to how many groups are ahead of them, and thus how long they will have to wait.  Allocate people in wheelchairs to the rear of each group. Explain this clearly in order to prevent passengers climbing over them to board the boats.  Remind all if appropriate, that the passenger assistance party will assist them to embark the survival craft.  Reassure them that they have not been forgotten. ENGINE ROOM FIRE PARTY There is more than one fire party. Hearing the engine room fire party called does not mean there is a fire in the engine room. Passengers may believe the fire is spreading if they hear this message, so it is important to assure them that it is just the name of one of the parties, who are being asked to assist another one.