Worries about managing crowds at Sydney’s Vivid Festival

Police reinforcements have been called in to address safety concerns at Sydney’s Vivid light festival, as massive crowds packed the harbour area, leading to reports of people feeling trapped in the crush.

The much-anticipated drone show at Circular Quay on Saturday night attracted thousands of spectators, with crowds gathering in large numbers over the long weekend. Organizers took to social media to advise people to avoid Circular Quay around 8:30pm due to the overwhelming turnout.

Following the drone show, reports surfaced of a dangerous crowd crush near the Overseas Passenger Terminal, with one user describing the situation as chaotic. The user mentioned that police had to intervene to remove barriers in response to the seriousness of the situation.

According to AAP reporter Scott Bailey, the scene resembled a cattle squeeze with a lack of security or event staff visible. Bailey noted that it seemed the organizers had not anticipated the size of the crowd, raising concerns about potential stampedes given the number of children present.

In a statement on social media, Vivid Sydney assured the public that event and security personnel were closely monitoring the crowd flow and would implement necessary measures to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all attendees, especially during busy periods.

In light of the overwhelming turnout, NSW Health Minister Ryan Park announced the deployment of extra police for the second drone show on Sunday night. Park urged people to avoid unnecessary trips to the foreshore and suggested that the light show could be seen from various vantage points across the city.

Vivid Sydney, an annual event organized by the NSW government’s tourism and major events agency, showcases innovation and technology over a 23-day period. Now in its 14th year, the festival aims to transform Sydney into a vibrant hub of creativity and entertainment.