How to Manage Black Friday Crowds: Barricades for Black Friday Safety

In the US, there is one day with more in-person sales than any other day of the year. (No, not Cyber Monday, the most popular shopping day for online sales). The highest earning day, otherwise of course is Black Friday. Black Friday sales reached record highs in 2020 increasing 21.6% year over year and topping out at a massive $9billion. 

This is great news for retailers of any kind across the country. However, there are safety considerations involved with such a popular shopping day steel barricades are used for safety perpose. Because 12 years from 2006 to 2018 saw 100 injuries in the US and 11 deaths, all due to incidents related to the Black Friday crowds. 

These incidents were not limited to the chaos of crowded interiors, fighting over products, or any of the other horror stories which may have made the news. During this 12 year stretch, one study revealed that more than 20 occurred at the entrances of stores and another 8 in the parking lot. This is shocking and yet simultaneously unsurprising, given the magnitude of attendance on Black Friday events. 

The difference between dangerous mayhem and a smooth event is often as simple as sufficient crowd management plans with barriers to assist. Here are some of the safety measures retailers should keep in mind for managing Black Friday crowds:

  1. Many businesses must hire additional staff for their Black Friday events. This may include additional checkout staff or additional security. This is not simply important for minimizing shoplifting, but this also helps keep pedestrians where they belong.
  2. Setting up proper, organized lines for entering and exiting stores is imperative. Retractable belt barriers are popular tools for handling indoor checkout lines, but steel barricades are more effective for handling organized entry, blocking off unintended entryways or creating pathways through parking lots. Interlocking steel barricades are especially effective for this kind of crowd management because they provide a continuous barrier that’s hard to penetrate.
  3. Proper signage helps to fortify safety barriers with messaging that makes it clear to customers where they should and shouldn’t be going. When customers are lost or confused, it adds to chaos which increases the risk of dangerous incidents. While signage is far from sufficient on its own, it is still an effective tool to fortify other barriers.
  4. Retailers should also make sure their walkways are clear of unnecessary clutter. Signage is helpful, but too much signage or too many floor displays can create trip-and-fall risks, and these kinds of displays should be thoughtful instead of excessive. Trip and fall accidents are far more common when crowds are high. 

While there are many products which work together to carry out Black Friday safety plans, Steel barricades are among the most affordable and effective solutions for controlling entry into a shopping center. To learn more about specific barricade set up patterns, read this post about barricade patterns. 

Here are some of the barricade features which contribute to the effectiveness of steel barricades:

  • Steel barricades have flat or bridge feet which allow them to remain sturdy on flat or uneven surfaces, respectively. 
  • Interlocking steel barricades attach together to create a continuous barrier which is difficult for pedestrians to penetrate.

This barricade comparison chart shows the common ways in which barricades can be customized for your particular need or environment. 

barricade comparison chart

For more information about barricade varieties, this barricade buying guide offers even more details. 

About the Author

Rosha Jones

Rosha H. Jones was born in new york city, Studied at Columbia University. Currently working as owner at Summertimemedia.com He helps readers learn the business & technology, hone their skills, and find their unique voice so they can stand out from the crowd.

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