Public Safety & Event Management Plan

Crowd Management

Fire Watch

Public Safety & Event Management Plan

Special events with an expected attendance of 1,000 or more people at one location at any given time are required to submit a formal Public Safety & Event Management Plan. Complete ADDENDUM F: Public Safety & Event Management Plan Form or submit a document that includes all of the same information as in the form.
In general, the plan must include an assessment of all of the following conditions and related safety measures:

  • Nature of the events and the participants and attendees
  • Access and egress movement, including crowd density problems
  • Medical emergencies
  • Fire hazards and/or fire protection equipment provided
  • Permanent and temporary structural systems
  • Severe weather conditions
  • Earthquakes
  • Civil or other disturbances
  • Hazardous materials incidents within and near the facility
  • Acts of terrorism within and near the facility
  • Relationships among facility management, event participants, emergency response agencies, and others having a role in the assembly events

Crowd Managers

Section 403.3 of the Seattle Fire Code requires that trained crowd managers be provided for facilities or events where more than 1,000 persons congregate. The minimum number of crowd managers shall be established at a ratio of one crowd manager to every 250 persons.

Individual persons or job/staff positions designated as crowd mangers should be identified in the written emergency procedures portion of the approved public safety plan, where required and/or the fire safety and emergency plan. It is recommended that alternate crowd managers also be designated and be trained as required.

Crowd Manager Training

Designated crowd managers shall be familiar with the approved public safety plan and/or the fire safety and emergency plan, and be properly trained in the emergency procedures described in the plan.

Crowd Manager Duties

Designated crowd managers shall appropriately implement the emergency procedures described in the approved public safety plan and/or the fire safety and emergency plan. In addition, crowd managers shall also act as fire watch personnel and keep diligent watch for fires, obstructions to means of egress, and other hazards during the time such place is open to the public or such activity is being conducted and take prompt measures for remediation of hazards, extinguishment of fires that occur, and assist in the evacuation of the public from the event areas (i.e., structures, premises).

Crowd Management Plan

The crowd management plan is part of the public safety plan, and should clearly identify all crowd manager positions and duties including those persons responsible for calling 911 and meeting emergency responders. Crowd manager stations and location assignments, where provided, shall be illustrated on the site layout plan.

Fire Watch Personnel

In accordance with Section 403.1 of the Fire Prevention Code, if the fire code official decides it is essential for public safety in a place of assembly or any other place where people congregate, the owner, agent or lessee of the space shall provide one or more fire watch personnel. Fire watch personnel will be required and approved by the Seattle Fire Marshal, and must remain on duty during the times such places are open to the public, or when such activity is being conducted. The Fire Marshal may require fire watch personnel for a variety of reasons, including the number of people anticipated to congregate, or the nature of the performance, exhibition, display, contest or activity.

General Duties

All attendants, employees, and staff of fairs, festivals, and outdoor public assemblages should maintain a constant fire watch, which involves keeping a diligent watch for smoke and fire, obstructions to means of egress and emergency vehicle routes, and other hazards during the event. Attendants, employees, and supervisors should take prompt measures for remediation of hazards, calling 911 when required, and assisting with the evacuation of impacted areas in accordance with the written emergency plan.


More information regarding crowd managers as well as several online training opportunities are available at the following websites:

Special Events

Address: 700 5th Avenue, Suite 5752, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 94708, Seattle, WA, 98124-4708
Phone: (206) 684-8017
Fax: (206) 684-7025

The City of Seattle plays a strong role in helping event planners bring people together safely and successfully in both city-wide and neighborhood events.