With the new football season now underway, Counter-Terrorism Policing has been working with the Premier League, the English Football League (EFL) and the Football Association (FA) to help improve stadium security. Two Counter-Terrorism Awareness Workshops, specially configured to take into account the current threats posed to the sports stadiums sector, were held at Wembley Stadium and Old Trafford and attended by football club officials from right across the country.
The Premier League and the EFL have also undertaken to circulate security advice to all clubs for use on their websites and social media channels.
Superintendent Dave Roney, deputy national co-ordinator for Protect and Prepare, explained: “While there’s no specific intelligence of an increased threat to football grounds in the UK, we’ve seen that terrorists are prepared to carry out attacks on this type of target. We’ve been pleased with the response from the football authorities in attending our events and making renewed efforts to do all they can to keep supporters safe. These events provided clubs with the opportunity to share Best Practice and gave police colleagues an insight into matchday activities.”
The key advice Counter-Terrorism Policing is asking clubs to share with their supporters is as follows:
*Arrive at the stadium early, allowing more time for security checks
*Minimise what you carry as fewer bag searches will speed up entry to the ground
*Be vigilant at all times and, if you see anything suspicious, tell a steward right away
*If you witness anything that could pose an immediate threat to safety then call 999
*In an emergency, listen to the Public Address instructions and follow them
*If told to evacuate the stadium, do so immediately
*Do not place yourself in danger by filming events on your mobile phone
*Move right away from the stadium as quickly as possible for your own safety and to allow clear access for any Emergency Services vehicles
*Once you’re safe, follow the local police force on Twitter for news updates on any developing situation