The Indian Premier League (IPL) is one of the most awaited cricket tournaments. Every year, millions of cricket buffs visit stadiums all over the country to partake in the sporting fervour. While organisers make all possible arrangements for comfort and safety of the audience during IPL matches, it is imperative for cricket enthusiasts too to be well-versed with some safety measures and stay better equipped to handle any exigency.
Here are a few things one should keep in mind when in a crowded place like stadium.
Wear comfortable shoes for mobility: This is one of the most basic, but highly crucial things to keep in mind for IPL buffs. A big match at a stadium has the potential to create a stampede-like situation. Ensure you are wearing your most comfortable and sturdy pair of shoes that will prevent tripping, slipping, and help you run swiftly if necessary. Avoid flip flops or heels as far as possible.
Hydrate well: One of the most frequently occurring mishaps during a crowded sporting event is losing consciousness due to dehydration. Fans tend to stand for long hours, and skip consuming adequate water, ending up dehydrated due to overexposure to the sun. Therefore, it is important to hydrate yourself before and during the game to avoid exhaustion.
Memorise all emergency service numbers: It is necessary for all people, including children and the elderly, to memorise the relevant numbers, like 100 for police, 108 for emergency medical aid and 101 for fire. Calling the emergency services should be the first step if you find yourself in a situation, following which you should calmly evacuate the area if the situation permits.
Keep your mobile phone charged: Keeping your mobile phone on full charge is essential so that you can be reachable at all times, even during a mishap. Always enter a stadium with a charged phone or a power back-up, an emergency alert and a handy speed dial list, with contacts of friends and family. Be wary of the battery consumption while capturing the match, as getting carried away may cause the phone battery to completely drain out midway through the match.
Observe the nearest exits: As all IPL matches are held at large stadium, it is important for visitors to identify all the exits of the particular venue before entering, especially the ones closest to them. In the case of emergencies, most people attempt to exit from the same place from where they entered, and thus, it is to know alternate exits of the venue, which are almost always provided online in the form of a map.
Avoid getting into conflicts: Cricket is being considered a religion in India, most IPL attendees come with full support and love for a particular team that is playing. On some occasions, there could be an argument between passionate enthusiasts, which can escalate into a brawl. In such a situation, it is best to take a step back and steer away to avoid the situation from taking a serious turn.
Be alert: Accidents and emergencies occur when you least expect them. Therefore, always be aware of your surroundings and prepared to move. Moreover, if you find suspicious activity around you, be sure to inform the security personnel posted closest to you.
Take deep breaths and be calm: In the case of an unforeseen emergency at a stadium, the audience usually panic. But it is critical that you try and maintain a calm demeanour. Engage in some deep breathing to calmly deal with the situation at hand.
(Manish Sacheti is CFO, Ziqitza Health Care Limited)