Closing Time: Nightclub Crowd Management and Patron Safety

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The last hour, through closing, of a nightclub or bar can be the most dangerous for patrons and challenging for staff, in terms of safely managing crowd flow and behavior.

Nightclub & Bar warns, “it can be problematic if not monitored and proactively managed.” Some closing time security issues and management tips are listed below.

Historical Incidents at Closing Time

A high percentage of incidents occur in the hour before, during and immediately after a venue closes and the longer the venue stays open the higher the risk for incidents. Bar and nightclub owners and managers need to make sure that their staff doesn’t become complacent and that they are constantly on alert; looking for areas of suspicious activity. Staff reductions or under staffing can also leads to more incidents and the improper handling of issues that may arise.

Your staff also needs to keep a close eye on patron’s right before and during last call as patron consumption rates increase and social behavior is impacted. Failure to proactively interact with patrons during closing time and making them aware of the security staf
fs presence can also lead to inappropriate behavior.

Revenues vs. Risk Exposure

Evaluating the real revenue picture during the last hour of operation and understanding that in most operations, those that have increased revenues near closing time have more police involved incidents. The risks associated with the increase in sales/revenue in the final hours of operation include the risk of fights and altercations, customer complaints and service incidents, and violating local liquor laws and alcohol management.

Best Practices

In order to keep you patrons safe and reduce incidents during closing time you need to:

  • Evaluate and have a closing plan
  • Use the POS System for closing time analysis
  • Evaluate last hour cover charge policy
  • Proactive management interaction with patrons during last hour
  • Work to mitigate staff complacency
  • Practice heightened alcohol awareness during last hour
  • Manage the social behavior because they are impaired

Read the full article here.

Nightclub Responsibility and Patron Rights

By law, bar and nightclub owners are required to protect all guests legally on the premises from any foreseeable harm. Should the property owner or management company fail to provide adequate safety and security measures, they may be held civilly liable for any injuries or wrongful deaths which occur as a consequence.


Choosing the Right Attorney

Selecting the right attorney for you or your family is highly important. You must feel confident that the attorney you hire has a complete understanding of the law applicable to your particular case, and has successful experience in handling such cases.

Important: Do not hire a lawyer who has violated the Rules of Professional Conduct!!!

You should not hire an attorney who calls you or visits you unsolicited, or anyone that contacts you directly to offer legal services. This activity is strictly prohibited by Rule 7.3 of the American Bar Association (ABA) Model Rules of Professional Conduct, which states as follows:



If an attorney, or someone acting on behalf of an attorney, contacts you in this manner, that attorney is in violation of this Rule. This unethical and unprofessional activity on the part of the lawyer is good sign that you should stay away. It is imperative that you are represented by an attorney who is capable of advocating for you within the confines of the law, and an attorney who fails to abide by the Rules of Professional Conduct is probably not the best fit. In fact, any such attorney should be immediately reported to the local State Bar Association. If you have been contacted in such an unsolicited manner, contact us and we’ll assist you in filing a report.
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