Whenever there’s a big F1 event, such as the Monaco Grand Prix or British Grand Prix, you’d be shocked at how much planning goes into the security. F1 security is flawless from top to bottom because it has to be. The crowds are always huge, with the 2022 Italian Grand Prix weekend drawing a record of crowd of 337,000, which means event organizers have no option but to bolster the security so that everyone can be safe. If the F1 security wasn’t so high-quality, chaos would ensue, harming the F1 brand.
So, whether you’re a diehard F1 fan or a racing event organizer looking to improve your own event security, this guide is going to take a closer look at how F1 security works. Let’s begin.
1. Plastic Crowd Barricades
Plastic crowd barricades are used at all F1 events.
Usually, they’re orange in color. If you look around, you can see them everywhere.
For example, the plastic barricades are used all around the tracks to protect spectators in the crowd as well as the drivers themselves if they were to crash.
Additionally, plastic barricades are used both in and outside the venues for traffic and crowd control purposes. After all, the last thing that F1 security wants is for traffic congestion to happen or for fans to go to parts of the venue where they’re not supposed to.
Without plastic crowd barricades, F1 events would be a lot less safe. Therefore, if you want to experience stronger crowd control and boost your own racing event safety, visit otwsafety.com to get the right barricades for your venue.
Even if you’re only a casual F1 fan, you’ll know who the F1 marshals are.
These are the volunteers (yep, you can volunteer to be an F1 marshal if you want) whose main role is to remove damaged cars off the track whenever there’s an accident. They wear super bright orange overalls, so it’s impossible to miss them.
For instance, if a driver collides with one of the side barriers and individual car parts scatter across the track, the marshals will ensure that the surrounding area is safe before removing the parts and any rubble. This way, the other drivers (as well as people in the crowd) can remain safe.
Almost all motorsports have at least a handful of marshals working at each event. If you’re an event organizer, you should do the same thing. After all, without marshals, you’ll have no trained professionals there who can safely remove cars from the track after an accident.
3. Security Staff
Here are a couple of fun facts about F1’s security staff:
- There are 4,700+ security staff working at most Grand Prix weekends
- This includes 1800 police
Security staff are there for a wide variety of reasons, such as to monitor crowd behavior and remove any
individuals (or groups of people) that are causing problems. Unfortunately, bad behavior does frequently happen
at F1 events, but security staff are there to stamp it out.
Usually, security staff wear high-visibility gear so you can easily see them. This works as a deterrent, as fans are much less likely to engage in antisocial behavior when they know that security (such as security stewards) are nearby.
Also, almost all of the major F1 drivers, from Lewis Hamilton to Max Verstappen, have their own private security with them throughout race days. Again, this is so they can protect themselves from fans and outside interference.
Interestingly, the 2023 Australian Grand Prix implemented some major security improvements in response to the reported crowd abuse that took place at the Red Bull Ring. Now, it’s much more difficult for fans to sneak alcohol into the circuits due to the increased security measures, which is great news for the majority of fans. Clearly, F1 is taking its security more seriously than ever, which is a trend you can expect to see continue for years to come.
4. Surveillance Cameras
Whether you attend an F1 event in person or watch it on TV from the comfort of your home, look closely and see lots of surveillance cameras scattered around the circuit. Behind the scenes, there are security workers analyzing these cameras each second to ensure that everyone in the crowd is safe. If any suspicious behavior is identified, such as a group of people who appear to be sneaking alcohol in, security guards will then be assigned the task of escorting these individuals away from the venue.
Medical emergencies can happen at any major event — and F1 Grand Prix events are no different.
Sometimes, fans can fall over, become dehydrated, and even lose consciousness (such as when the weather is extremely hot). This is why most F1 events have around 25 doctors and medical professionals at the circuit so that they can respond quickly if any fans need them.
Usually, if you’re at an F1 event and need medical assistance, you’ll be able to use the signage to find the nearby medical facilities and pop-up medical tents. These are especially common at the biggest venues, such as Istanbul Park. If you can’t find the medical assistance you need, you’ll be able to ask other staff members (such as F1 stewards) where you need to go.
With an event like F1 safety and security have to be at the forefront of every decision that is made in regard to event planning and hosting. This article has covered the basics of F1 security, so now you know how F1 security works, from the use of plastic crowd barricades to the on-site medical experts who ensure that fans remain safe and healthy.
If you host any independent motorsport events in the future, you can learn from F1 and implement their best practices. This way, your events will run smoothly with no accidents, injuries, or antisocial behavior. Instead, fans will have a great time watching the action take place on the track — and you can’t ask for more.