What are P and S factors
Factors involved in assessing a safe capacity
It is explained in the Guide to Safety at Sports Grounds (Green Guide), that the safe capacity of a sports ground should take account of both its physical condition and its safety management. These are known as the (P) factor and the (S) factor respectively.
Each of them is given a numerical value of between 0.0 and 1.0. These are used to determine the holding capacity, namely the number of spectators that can safely be accommodated in the area concerned, before the capacities of the entrances, exits and emergency exits are taken into account. Ground management should ensure they are assessed by a competent person with knowledge and understanding of the ground concerned, its operation and the general principles of safety.
Where any part or parts of a ground are covered by a safety certificate issued by the local authority ground management’s assessment of the (P) and (S) factors should be included with the capacity calculations when they are forwarded to the local authority for review and validation. Because each sports ground is different, the Green Guide does not attempt to place specific values on any of the elements that are likely to be considered when assessing (P) and (S) factors.
This is because assessments should not aim to create a cumulative scoring system in which values for individual elements are simply added together. Instead, the assessment should reflect a considered and reasonable overall judgement of the physical condition and safety management of the area in question. Further information is available within the Green Guide.
Supporting information on Safety Management
The SGSA has expanded on the advice contained in the Green Guide and sets out the safety management systems and procedures which should be in place at sports grounds.
The (S) factor for any ground may therefore be determined by judging how far the ground management meets the recommendations contained in Safety Management. When assessing the (S) factor consideration should be given to the
- club’s safety policy;
- competency of the safety officer and his/her deputy;
- quality of the stewarding;
- safety systems and procedures in place; and
- management of the spectator accommodation.
Check the regulations
Monitoring Local Authorities
The SGSA has published guidance on Safety Certification which provides a single source of reference on the principles and procedures governing the safety certification of sports grounds. The SGSA uses this document as a yardstick when keeping under review local authorities which come within its regulatory oversight.
Tools and resources
Concourses draws upon the views and experience of safety officers, leading stadia architects and engineers in addition to the survey work of the Core Cities group of local authorities. It examines how floor space factors are applied in other similar venues and contains clear advice on concourse occupancy levels and floor space factors which will provide an invaluable source of information for sports ground managers, designers, safety advisors and interested agencies when upgrading existing or designing new facilities at sports grounds.
How to calculate the safe capacity of a sports ground?
The responsibility for calculating the safe capacity of a ground rests with the ground management. Where any part or parts of a ground are covered by a safety certificate issued by the local authority the capacity calculated by ground management should be reviewed by the local authority and if validated included in the safety certificate. Further information and detail is available in the Green Guide.
When should the first annual inspection and structural appraisal be undertaken at a new, or recently completed, stadium?
It is usual that the safety certificate or operations manual will require ground management to obtain every 12 months , a report from a competent person that the structural elements have been inspected and found to be adequate.
What they're saying
“Fan safety at sports grounds is paramount. The world looks to us as an example of how to manage risks and improve safety records and this guide will continue to contribute to that legacy.”
Rt Hon Jeremy Wright MP, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport