London 2012, the ATP Tour and the Kings of Leon incident: Fire safety at the O2 Arena

Paul Andrews, project manager at AEG Europe, has played a major role in the fire safety operation at the O2 Arena in London. Below he gives a detailed account of the fire protection/safety systems and fire-engineered strategy at the erstwhile Millennium Dome, including measures implemented for concerts, the 2012 Olympic Games and the ATP tennis tour. IFSEC Global: Hi, Paul.

Please tell us a bit about your role at the O2 Paul Andrews: I ve been working at The O2 since its opening in 2007. For the first four years I worked in the in the building services team. My job was to maintain the fire alarm system and coordinate the maintenance of the other fire protection systems across the venue. Unfortunately the venue had a serious fire incident in December of 2010. The Kings of Leon were due to play a number of concerts, but on the first morning, whilst the production team were loading-in the stage, a tour bus caught fire in the arena s service yard. The fire was extinguished by the London Fire Brigade. Their swift actions, coupled with the efforts on the in-house teams, meant that the incident only lasted for a matter of hours on that fateful day. Essentially the band still could have played that night, but the mutual decision was for the show not to take place. Off of the back of that and due to other restructuring taking place, the business created an enhanced role in the health and safety team, the role of fire safety manager, and since 2011 I ve been in that role for AEG.

Both the building services and health and safety teams are part of the facilities department. The O2 concourse (photo: Liam Daly under CC 2.0) CW: What was the thinking behind this restructuring? PA: I don t know how well you know the changes in fire legislation over the last 10 years but, basically, in 2005 there was a change in UK fire legislation. The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRO) was created and enforced in 2006. For premises like The O 2, prior to 2006 the London Fire Brigade would carry out an annual audit and issue a fire certificate to say everything s OK . With the introduction of the new legislation this responsibility was placed back on the businesses and the employees (competent people) who work at the premises. The implementation of the new legislation roughly coincided with the opening The O2. IG: It s quite an unusual structure you have to protect PA: The building formerly the Millennium Dome initially opened in 2000 for the Millennium Experience. It was only open for a year to celebrate the coming of the third millennium, but even today there are lots of bits about the building, infrastructure-wise, that we ve inherited from the legacy of The Dome .

The building sits on the Greenwich Peninsula at the edge of South East London. Its western edge is passed by the Prime Meridian, which is the birthplace of time. The O2 has 12 iconic yellow support masts that jut out from the fabric to represent the 12 months of the year and the 12 hours on a clock face The building is constructed out of tensioned fabric over a skeleton of steel. Of the many large domes worldwide which share this construction scheme, the Millennium Dome is one of the largest. Symbolism was key to the design of the dome and there are many symbolic pieces of the structure. It has 12 iconic yellow support masts that jut out from the fabric that represent the 12 months of the year and the 12 hours on a clock face. This is an attempt to pay homage to the role of Greenwich mean time and the prime meridian. The circular dome shape also has a diameter of 365 metres to represent the days of the year. The centre of the dome is a full 52 metres tall to represent the 52 weeks in each year.

Prince s 2007 performance at the O2 IG: Can you give us an overview of fire safety tech and procedures in what is such an unusual building? PA: From a fire safety point of view, due to the bespoke design and construction, compliance with normal building regulations wasn t exactly possible. So we have what s known as a fire-engineered strategy. It s a unique combination of comprehensive fire protection and detection systems, plus a strict set of fire safety management rules that have to be adhered to. The venue has a number of perspex shutters that raise automatically when the fire alarm goes off and essentially they re our final fire exits The biggest challenge in terms of fire is because we are an enclosed environment, if we were to have a fire, how do we vent the smoke from The O2? One of the legacy items from the dome design is right on top of the roof. We have a number of smoke vents which open when the fire alarm is activated to assist with smoke ventilation. In each one of the structural yellow support masts there s a large smoke extract fan. These systems assist with the problem of venting the smoke out of the space if there is an incident.

Around the perimeter of the building we also have some unique assets from the history of the dome. The venue has a number of perspex shutters that raise automatically when the fire alarm goes off and essentially they re our final fire exits. So they re just some of the main quirky things that we ve inherited from the old design of the Millennium Dome and that we have to maintain even now almost 20 years later. Inside the arena we ve got pretty much the full complement of fire safety arrangements: a comprehensive, networked fire alarm system throughout the whole venue with a PAVA, audible warning system. There are certain areas of the fire alarm system where we ve got an aspirating type of smoke detection, called VESDAs very early smoke detection apparatus. That includes inside the auditorium itself at high level. We ve got a couple of areas inside the arena that have sprinkler coverage. One of those areas is the loading bay where we had the fire; the second area is the American Express invites lounge. All kitchen canopies at the venue incorporate a UV filtration system, which use UVC rays to break down grease particles in extracted cooking smoke/air Around the perimeter of The O2 Arena is The Avenue , which is where all the bars and restaurants are still inside the building!.

All of the buildings there have sprinklers throughout. Due to the higher risks associated with these premises higher fire risk because of the kitchens and cooking activities sprinklers are included to mitigate that risk. As you can imagine we ve got fire extinguishers in all areas of the site. All the restaurants units on The Avenue and the catering kitchens in the arena have a special arrangement in terms of extraction, which is quite unique as well. All of the kitchen canopies at the venue incorporate a UV filtration system, which use UVC rays to break down the grease particles in extracted cooking smoke/air. IG: Is that common in restaurants in general? PA: In some, but not others, but again, it s one of the stipulations of our fire engineering strategy at the O2. All 27 plus restaurants and bars have to follow our fire safety requirements inside The O2. Prospective tenants may or may not have done it in their other restaurant franchises across the country but they had to comply here.

Entrance to Cineworld (photo: Zeisterre under CC by SA-3.0) IG: What about firefighter access and evacuation routes? PA: There are four main firefighting staircases in the arena. During an evacuation spectators would use one of these four protected staircases each, which also consist of a firefighting lift. The O2 also has its own private fire hydrant water main onsite. In terms of fire brigade access, having the luxury of those perspex shutters at regular frequencies around the perimeter means they can access where need be in the event of an emergency. They re big enough to get a fire engine inside. So there s a clear route round the arena itself and around the perimeter of the venue. So they can utilise those fire hydrants and everything else. IG: Have any particular events posed the biggest challenges?

PA: The biggest event that I ve been lucky to part of to date was the Olympic Games in 2012, The O2 (was called the North Greenwich Arena for the duration of the Olympics) hosted the gymnastics and the finals of the basketball and the Paralympic basketball events as well. For some of larger events like the Olympics, organisers can erect temporary structures to support the main event in the arena. In previous years, for the Brit Awards for example- they will build a marquee structure for an after show party. Similarly for the world finals of the ATP tennis tour; hospitality structures & practice tennis courts and more are housed in temporary structures. Each and every time, as per the requirements of our fire engineered strategy, a fire detection system will installed throughout all of those marquees. We work with an external fire design consultant to scrutinise all of the construction materials that are used to make sure that fire size/fire loading limits of the existing smoke ventilation systems are complied with and not exceeded. It is very common for special effects to be part of the production for an incoming arena event. Whether its pyrotechnics, lasers, water effects all is demonstrated to the licensing team at Greenwich council. CW: Do you have to work closely with LFB?

PA: Yes. Because of our fire engineered strategy and these rules and requirements that we have to enforce, the LFB have also enforced what s known as an alterations notice on the venue. That s not a bad thing, like the HSE handing out an improvement or enforcement notice. An alterations notice means that if any physical or non-physical change to the existing fire precautions is planned, we have to notify the London Fire Brigade of how we plan to manage the risk. We may also notify our insurers, Greenwich building control and the Greenwich licensing team. Visit FIREX International for cutting-edge solutions, essential knowledge and the ability to grow your business by getting direct access to the whole fire safety industry. It is the perfect place to get your product in front of thousands of buyers, across a multitude of featured areas.

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Man Gets Five Years For Security Guard's Death CBS Tampa

File photo of a gavel in front of a judge. (Credit: Thinkstock)

File photo of a gavel in front of a judge. (Credit: Thinkstock)

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) A Tampa Bay area shoplifter has been sentenced to five years in prison because a security guard suffered a fatal heart attack while trying to stop the crime.

As part of a deal with Hillsborough County prosecutors, 36-year-old Mervin Bettis pleaded guilty Monday to third-degree murder. He could have received up to 30 years in prison.

Authorities say Bettis tried to steal about $1,100 worth of razor blade cartridges from a Tampa Target in May 2011. Two security guards struggled with Bettis as he tried to flee.

Minutes after handcuffing Bettis, one of the guards 65-year-old Russell Horner collapsed and later died.

Florida law says a person can be charged with felony murder if a death occurs during the commission of certain felonies.

( Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

All Rights Reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Bomb scare sparks calls for video surveillance – The Local

Following last week’s discovery of a faulty bomb at Bonn’s central railway station, a new opinion poll on Friday showed that four out of five Germans want more surveillance cameras in train stations and other public places.

Just 18 percent of Germans were against tougher video surveillance, according to the survey by Infratest dimap, released by broadcaster ARD.

Last Monday, a blue sports bag left on a platform in Bonn’s main station was found to contain an improvised explosive device. The detonation device was reportedly triggered but did not go off. Prosecutors believe Islamist extremists were behind the botched attempt.

The train platform was not under full surveillance, and despite the presence of video cameras, no footage of the bag drop-off was recorded. The only images available of the suspects themselves were taken at a nearby McDonald’s restaurant. The case has ignited a fierce debate among German policy-makers – with politicians from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives, the Christian Democratic Union, calling for more video surveillance.

The centre-left Social Democrats, as well as the Greens and the Left Party, oppose the CDU stance. Earlier this week, Green Party parliamentary leader Renate K nast told the S ddeutsche Zeitung that Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich should instead push for better cooperation between the various offices and targeted efforts to prevent future attacks. “We need effective security authorities, not blanket surveillance,” she said.

DPA/The Local/arp

Security Guard Opens Fire On Crafton Heights Suspect CBS …

CRAFTON HEIGHTS (KDKA) Police are investigating after a suspect was shot while allegedly dragging a security guard at a Crafton Heights apartment complex Tuesday night.

According to police, the incident happened around 9 p.m.

on Woodlow Street.

Full details of the incident have not been released, but a security officer opened fire on a motorist and struck them in the arm.

According to a report in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the security guard opened fire because the suspect was dragging his partner.

Security guards were then able to hold the driver until police arrived.

There is no word on the suspect s condition at this time.

Stay With For More Details


More Local News1More Crafton Heights News2More Reports From Heather Abraham3


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Elite Security Consultants Provides Online Security Tips and More …

Elite_Security_Consultants_OhioWhen you hear the name Elite Security Consultants1, a few things probably come to mind Local security guards. Personal bodyguards. Masters of Self-defense training. Trusted security services company. Defenders of the Summit County, Ohio area. But did you also know that these experienced officers have quite the web presence as well? Elite Security Consultants 2does everything it can to help out those in need of extra security measures including offering online security tips and general safety knowledge to Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio and Akron, Ohio citizens. When you visit Elite Security3 s comprehensive Facebook page or follow them on Twitter, you can learn all about how to keep yourself safe. Plus, you ll be able to learn about some of Elite Security4 s upcoming safety events!

If you ve read or heard anything about Elite Security Consultants5, then you already know that this is one company that takes its job seriously. Elite Security6 s staff members pride themselves on being not just bark. As one of the leading companies for local security guards in the Summit County area, it s obvious that the team works hard to defend their clients and help them to defend themselves. But that doesn t mean that they re all work, all the time! In fact, Elite Security7 often takes time to answer questions and offer online security tips on their Facebook and Twitter pages. Whether it s how to stay safe during Halloween, the best ways to defend yourself in a dangerous situation, or simply how NOT to act in certain scenarios, Elite Security Consultants 8offers these important tips to people in our area and beyond.

But what you may find even more helpful is that Elite Security9 also provides information on their upcoming safety events. Whether you ve always wanted to take self-defense training or you re interested in a CCW course, Elite Security Consultants10 is the place to visit. They offer these types of courses every month at their Canton facility. If learning how to protect yourself or properly handle a weapon is something you d like to do, you can find links to these events with schedules and guidelines on their Facebook and Twitter pages. Plus, you can find out other ways that Elite Security11 is involved in the Akron and Cuyahoga Falls communities as well.

Elite Security Consultants may be the company that s not just bark, but that s just one side to this group of local security guards. When it comes to connecting to Summit County, Ohio citizens on their social media sites, you can count on having your questions and comments answered quickly by a knowledgeable staff member. So, if you want to learn about upcoming safety events, such as self-defense training, be sure to visit ESC s website at www.ESCOhio.com12, as well as their Facebook and Twitter pages. Their social media sites are a great place to visit for online security tips that you can use in your own Akron, Ohio or Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio neighborhood. To find out more about ESC and the services they offer, give them a call at 855.372.6446.


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Lauderhill Police Shoot Security Guard CBS Miami

One person was injured in a police involved shooting in Lauderhill. (Source: CBS4)

One person was injured in a police involved shooting in Lauderhill. (Source: CBS4)

LAUDERHILL (CBSMiami) One person was wounded in a police involved shooting early Thursday morning in Lauderhill.

It happened around 2 a.m. when officers were sent to International Global Metals recycling center on 31st Avenue at NW 17th Street to check out reports of an intruder.

Police have not said what led to the shooting. The injured man was taken to Broward Health Medical Center.

Friends and co-workers of the injured man identified him as Earle Brown who they guessed was in his 70s.

He s an excellent guy, said Lou Manyou, Very caring, a very caring guy, he s known through the whole community.

Co-workers said Brown has been the overnight security guard at the recycling center for 25 years and was on routine patrol when the shooting happened.

Police said Brown was armed but was not wearing any type of clothing that identified him as a security guard.

My understanding is that there were no markings on his person that indicated, that in fact, he is employed as a security guard, said Lauderhill police spokesman Captain Rick Rocco.

Police said because Brown had a firearm, the officers perceived him as a threat.

You can place a weapon in their hands, said Rocco, That creates a great danger to the officers in any situation.

The shooting has put people who live around the recycling center on edge.

I heard the shots fired, first like boom, boom, them and I heard boom, boom, boom, boom, boom and I m like Get off the bed, get on the ground and stay down because there were kids in the house, said Ike Francis.

Police have not released Brown s condition but said his injuries were non-life threatening.

FBI Compiling Database Of Faces From Surveillance Video CBS …

Ian Bush

Reporting Ian Bush1

By Ian Bush

PHILADELPHIA(CBS) Forget fingerprints. The FBI reportedly is building a database of faces, using public surveillance cameras, to help agents identify suspects wherever they go. But the feds aren t the only ones who want to track you.

The billion-dollar, nationwide effort is called Next Generation Identification. New Scientist reports it ll include face and voice ID, iris scans, and DNA analysis.

In the end, it will hopefully allow law enforcement to more efficiently solve criminal investigations, says Dr. Rob D Ovidio, associate professor of criminal justice at Drexel University.

For him, the biggest question is what the FBI does with data that don t match suspects IDs.

The best-case scenario when it comes to privacy protection is that an image would not be stored after it has been determined that there is no match of it in the database, D Ovidio says. If they re retained, those people going about their everyday lives not doing anything criminal run the risk of the government being able to re-create their travels and understand patterns of behavior.

He says Congress must put in place restrictions on how long such information can be kept, and the White House must ensure the FBI follows those rules.

D Ovidio cautions that the similar facial recognition technologies are available to places like malls, banks, and other buildings where cameras are rolling.

The scary thing is that there is much less oversight of the surveillance practices of these private entities than there is over government agencies, D Ovidio says. We have limited ability to put those same safeguards into place when it comes to private entities that are capturing these data.


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BII door staff supervisor SIA training

The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) has warned pubs, bars and hospitality businesses using door staff to ensure all their employees have the correct level of training or face ‘crisis point’ when new Security Industry Authority (SIA) conditions become mandatory.

The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) has warned pubs and hospitality businesses to address the 'critical' issue of door staff security training before new regulations come into force

The British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) has warned pubs and hospitality businesses to address the ‘critical’ issue of door staff security training before new regulations come into force

The new standards, which come into force in February next year, will require all security staff and door supervisors to have undertaken physical intervention training before they can renew their SIA license.

Crisis point

The training has been compulsory for new door supervisors since June 2010 but it will now be necessary for all staff with the previous qualification looking to renew their licence.

“This is a business-critical issue,” Peter Thomas, the BII chief executive, warned. He said thousands of staff were likely to be affected and businesses needed to act now or risk the situation reaching ‘crisis point’.

“We estimate that there are between 50,000-60,000 licensed venues that will be affected by the new requirements. We are urging licensees and security agencies to ensure their door staff get the necessary qualification in place well before their employee s current SIA licences run out, or risk being caught up in any last minute rush for compliance.”


Door supervisors with the old award will only be able to carry on without taking the new training if they do not carry out ‘licensable activities’ – they will be able to apply for a security guarding licence when they renew with the SIA.

The new ‘Up-Skilling Door Supervisors’ award includes physical intervention training, how to escort customers off the premises safely, awareness of terrorist threats, first aid skills and guidance on dealing with 14 to 18-year-olds.

In response to the changes, the BII has launched a new course in May; the BIIAB Level 2 Award for Upskilling Door Supervisors.

The warning from the BII comes just over a month since the Home Office introduced new guidance for staff checking ID for proof-of-age. The guidelines now allow the use of military ID in licensed premises.

For more tips and advice on how to check ID without alienating young customers read our latest Ask the Experts column here.1


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Police: Brookhaven Man Arrested For Threatening Squassux …

Thomas Lippens (credit: Suffolk County Police)

Thomas Lippens (credit: Suffolk County Police)

BROOKHAVEN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) A Brookhaven man has been arrested for allegedly threatening to kill a marina security guard.

Thomas Lippens, 24, became irate Sunday afternoon after he and his parents were denied entry into the Squassux Landing Marina on Beaver Dam Road around 1 p.m., police said.

WCBS 880 s Mike Xirinachs reports

The security guard had turned down the group because they did not have the proper key to enter the marina, police said.

Lippens allegedly threatened the security guard and indicated he would come back with a gun, according to authorities.

He left on foot but came back about 15 minutes later riding a dirt bike with what appeared to be a handgun, police said. He threatened to kill the guard before riding away, police said.

Police found Lippens at his home on Bond Lane.

Lippens tried to run from the home but officers were able to detain him after a brief struggle, police said.

Investigators found ammunition, loaded assault rifles, Kung Fu stars, knives, a bullet proof vest and more than 20 marijuana plants at the home, police said.

Lippens has been charged with menacing, criminal possession of a weapon and unlawful possession of marijuana.

He will be arraigned Monday.