Managing Events’ Risks And Impacts: Risk Management For The Commemoration Event Of Charles Darwin Essay Examples

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Risk, Students, Management, Education, People, Disaster, Success, Fire

Pages: 10

Words: 2750

Published: 2020/12/11

Risk management is an essential factor should someone wish to have his or her event to be successful. People have often assumed that success of an event is all about seeing it through. Contrary to this, for an event to be successful it should also be measured in terms of the safety available throughout the event (Agrawal, 2009). To be able to identify, assess, and prioritize the potential risks that could occur during the event is risk management. It also involves the adequate coordination as well as the economical application of the available resources in order monitor, minimize and put under control the probability of occurrence of unfortunate events which are unexpected. Chances for the achievement of the objectives the event is meant to achieve are consequently increased (Bellalah, 2010). Using an instance of Charles Darwin commemorations that took place on 24th November 2009 at the University of Reading, this essay seeks insight into the risk management that was in place.


Charles Darwin is commemorated on this day by lectures on the theories and assertions this individual put forth. He is the man behind the theories which seek to explain the origin of all species and has jotted down a very influential science book and some scholars have identified his work as crucial in science. This is because of the fact that his work puts man in his true position in nature and has become the basis of modern biology. As a university which holds dear science, commemorating a giant significant scientific figure respected because of the works he did, the University of Reading takes pride in ensuring the success of this event. Therefore, as a measure to guarantee success, a health and risk assessment was conducted to prepare for any eventualities once the event kicks off.

Analysis of the Context of Risks

This event being of learning objectives to the participants of the event, it is taking place within a partially controlled environment filled with students. Therefore, should unfortunate events it could have impacts which are light to once which are dire. For instance, should a fire happen, a light effect could be that there could be distraction to other students not concerned with the event. A dire consequence could be that the fire could consume the whole building which could result in a massive loss of information (Hopkin, 2013). This means that the building burns down to the ground destroying lots of resources which are important to the school and the students. The major participants who are supposed to benefit extensively from this event are the students in the university taking a related course. Therefore, they should be a significant number of the total attendance (Brockow, et al., 2015).
The management of the event is by one person, Fiona Blair, who is both the event organizer and the health and safety controller of the event. She provides the directives and has a group of staff under her command to carry out her requests. She is working with full powers accorded to her by the Resources manager of the university. The environment of the university is under protection by enough security to prevent any outside source of interruptions from taking root. The event was set to happen on the ground floor of the Harnley business school which is a sufficient space to handle the lot. It is also a good environment because it is retrofitted with fire alarms, fire escapes, fire extinguishers reducing the danger that risks such as fire has to the event (Mehdizadeh et al., 2013).

Potential Risks to the Event

The mentioned potential risks involve fire hazards, crowd control, slipping or tripping, manual handling, lighting levels, lighting systems, heating and ventilation, electrical equipment, use of portable tools, pressurized equipment, noise and vibration, environmental noise, communication, violence to attendees or staff, marquees, inflatables, temporary structures, fairground equipment, lasers, fireworks, pyrotechnics, seating arrangements, welfare, sanitation, food provision, work with animals, chemicals, confined space, lone working, vehicles, machinery and other miscellaneous hazards. Crowd control is a potential problem initiator because huge crowds are easily spooked. Once spooked because of any reason, they are likely to cause a stampede where many people could fall and get trampled on. This could easily result into death of people (Gross, 2009). Fire hazards are a common threat to any event held in a building because what will start the fire are plenty. This could result in death of people rendering it a very serious problem (Carmichael, 2013).
Slipping and tripping is as a result of poor housekeeping where things are strewn on the floor making it easier for people to trip and fall. Spillages on slippery floors will make people slip and fall. This could be disadvantageous as people will break limbs and even significant body parts like the neck. Manual handling is the portaging of things such as tables and chairs from one point to another. It will determine the arrangement of furniture in the room the event is to take place hence a potential risk (Ishikawa and Naka, 2007). Altering the arrangement could mean that the access to fire extinguishers or fire escape routes could be difficult. This means that arrangements should always favor quicker access to these important facilities in case of a circumstance such as fire. Lighting systems and levels will affect the visibility in the room. The fact that it is a lecture event, presentations will be there. So, for maximum success, lighting has to be regulated accordingly to suit the moment (Västfjäll et al., 2014).
Electrical equipment includes things like the public address system which are to be extensively used in events like this. If the equipment fails maybe because of a short circuit, it is important that a spare is available to cater for the inconveniences. Success of the event will be hindered because of the lack of the equipment depending on the number of people present. Portable tools could result in issues because they could be thrown around carelessly and left lying around so that people trip and get involved in accidents. Noise will hinder conveyance of the information from the speaker to the audience thereby undermining the objectives of the event. Violence to the staff and visitors is also a viable risk. Though, its occurrence is at minimal, it could be a serious matter. Temporary structures if not well made could easily fall if they are not set up well. This could slow down the event making it of lower risk to the success of the event. Food provision is with regards to the guidelines of serving and preparing the food. If no principles for hygiene are not undertaken are catastrophic and the result could be food poisoning (Ishikawa & Tsujimoto, 2009).
Chemicals used during the presentation, as we all know that this lecture is scientific. Therefore, experiments were conducted to solidify the assertions of the theories. Handling of these chemicals is a potential risk and one that needs attention. Accidents due to poor handling of chemicals are severe and could result in death of a colleague. In addition, it could mean the end of the event prematurely. Confined space is a problem in waiting because it affects the ventilation of the room. Once ventilation is affected, the people are prone to infection of communicable diseases such as flu which affect their health considerably. Vehicles are important because a large number of people will mean the locomotives will be more and parking space is required. Though the significance of this is low in terms of it affecting the event’s success negatively, it could result in accidents because of the number of people being high and this could affect the event (Jordão & Sousa, 2010).

Risk Control Strategies for the Selected Risks

The relevant hazards that are more likely to affect the event are chosen out of the list and they include; crowd control, slips and trips, manual handling, electrical equipment and food provision. It is necessary for the planners of the event to provide strategic plans to outmaneuver these hazards if they take place. This will guarantee the success of the event by having means to get out of crisis that may be lying in wait. These solutions are created by the subgroups created from the division of the group of planners so that they can be allocated sections of the master-list of hazards to work on. Once the plans have been suggested and analyzed for viability, the same subgroups come up with contingency plans to ensure that no hazard endangers the success of the event (Strand, 2012).
Crowd control was identified by the event planners as a potential risk to the success of the event because of things like stampede. To avoid such from happening, it is important that the hosts gain control over the masses that they are handling. The first measure that was in place was that the social gathering was to be kept within the limits of the agreed and standard fire capacity of the building in terms of attendance which was about 250-275 people (Swann & Carr, 2006). This was to ensure that the number was easily manageable in case of unfortunate events like fire. Furthermore, the guests were to register upon arrival after which they were given tickets. The essence of doing this is to ensure that the number of the attendees is known for better management and maintenance within the stated range. As a contingency, six times the staff was present in the evening to provide assistance to the guests so that they could move around safely within the environment and the building eliminating threats like accidents (Krause, 2006).
Slipping and tripping were also viable threats to the event and the cause of this is possible spillage of drinks and food by the catering services. The hazard presented by this option is that the spillage could make someone trip or slip and could hurt him or herself severely. This could adversely affect the event. To counter this, however, the catering office was alerted of this issue so that its staff could clean out any spillages especially the ones on slippery floors. As contingency for this plan, the manager of the building was asked to provide the catering staff with the key to the equipment cabinet for proper storage of cleaning equipment. These equipment lying around could make someone trip as well. In addition, the people were informed that the security control of the event was responsible for first aid and hence their contact details made available just in case (Smulders & Collins, 2005).
Manual handling is another potential source of threats to the event’s success with regards to the arrangement patterns and access to fire and safety requirements. This portage happens before and after the event. The plan to squelch the threat posed by this item involves identifying the most qualified of the portaging staff employed within the university to carry out the task. This will ensure that the arrangement is top notch and one that can be counted on in that it meets the fire and safety requirements of a building. As a contingency to the plan, Fiona Blair, was expected to be present during the set-up to oversee it. This means that she was to provide the guidelines where she felt it was not right in form of arrangements. If the organizers felt that the staff hired by the school was insufficient, they could have hired external people who are sufficiently trained (Li, 2005).
Electrical equipment is the other problem which was selected as a relevant menace because of the fact that they could blow hindering the event from taking place successful. The electrical equipment includes things like the public address systems which are important for communication with the audience. If they fail, inaudibility will occur and the objectives of the event hindered. To handle this, it was proposed that a backup public address system should be ready in time for a just in case situation (National Research Council, 2009). For the system to crash, it is highly unlikely but someone should be better prepared than sorry. As contingency, the organizers ensured that an electrician is available to provide repairs to the system for use if there is no backup system. Even though this will take up much time, it will push the event behind schedule though it may not necessarily mean that the event should be cancelled (Vieira et al., 2014).
Food provision was the last hazard identified as a potential threat. This in terms of hygiene resulting into sicknesses and food poisoning and how the food has been prepared to meet the needs of everyone. To eliminate this hazard, the recommended strategy was that the catering service hired was to adopt the best food handling regulations whenever they were handling either food or drinks. To ensure that this is indeed being adhered to, a select of two university nutritionists were selected and posted to oversee the meal preparations procedures employed. To make the food safer, it was agreed that it had to be prepared off the site and delivered to the building. Offsite means that cooking was not done within the building the event was held but a different location within the university. As a contingency for the strategy in place, two separate menus were prepared by the resources manager of the university and the management of the catering team to meet the needs of even those with special needs (Merna & Al-thani, 2008).

Impacts of the Event

This event carries a lot of meaning to the people involved and the success of this event means introduction of a new generation of scientists into the world. During this event, the participants are able to take a walk down memory lane by getting information from other people who are not their everyday lecturers. For the scientific community of the university, it is one event that should not be tampered with. Keener scientists always claim that they will learn something new every time they listen to the teachings of Charles Darwin from another person’s perspective. Therefore, this event is a learning tool probably employed by the university to help the students mingle with professors who have done a similar course and are probably teaching it to the students of the school, this event means a lot more to them which warrants the need for a good risk management (Molenaar et al., 2010).
It is also a culture that has been alive for a while where they commemorate the work done by Charles Darwin and its essence. Scientists respect the work done by this man as it formed the basis of what is called biology today. It is what gave the people the perspective to understand scientifically the origin of human beings. Being an event organized to commemorate this great man, it will not be gratifying to these people to let it just go by without doing something in his memory. Some people in world have done projects that he started as a way of remembering him. For this university, they decided to have lectures on the subjects from renowned speakers to remind themselves of his work’s significance. The fact that it is a learning event means that it provides the participants with a chance to learn something new and increase their flow of ideas.
Failure of this event will affect the participants and the school economically. Resources should have been adequately allocated and used to see through this event. Acquiring all these resources and channeling them into the event to ensure that it is successful. Providing adequate funds for the event was also to make sure that only the bet speakers are brought to the event. Should this event fail, it means that these funds are gone to waste. It will be a total loss for the university because of the fact that all the money is spent and the target audience (students) has left with no information of the same. The objectives of the event are now not met and the success rate of the event is highly reduced. The participants have also spent fare and fuel to come for the event and if the event is unsuccessful, it means that they have faced an economic loss as well.


Going through the risk management procedure that the planner of this event underwent, we can clearly see the benefit of this tool. I have been able to acquire the skill of analysis, knowledge and evaluation. Analysis is from the part where I had to identify the different hazards that the event in question is more likely to happen. Once identification is complete, I was able to provide a detailed analysis of how these hazards could affect the computer. Knowledge comes in when I was able to uncover the different extra information hiding behind little that they could say about these hazards. Hence knowledge comes with the ability to research more information. A final skill is that of evaluation where I have been able to ultimately evaluate the findings from the report which enables me understand what exactly the event is meant to achieve. I have been able to analyze the strategies for elimination of these risks to further showcase this new skill.


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