Safety in World Cup Stadiums Four red cards

In the case of panic, some of the structurally determined deficiencies of certain World Cup Stadiums could have disastrous consequences. This is the conclusion of an investigation into the safety of the 12 World Cup stadiums carried out by Stiftung Warentest. The full results are now available online and will be published in the February edition of “test” magazine.

The Olympic Stadium in Berlin, the Veltins Arena in Gelsenkirchen and the Central Stadium in Leipzig have been found to have “considerable deficiencies” which could prove fatal. When panic brakes out spectators almost automatically rush forward in the direction of the pitch. If this escape route is blocked, as we discovered it would be in the three named stadiums, then it is a potential death-trap. The Fritz-Walter Stadium in Kaiserslautern also has “considerable deficiencies”. For example there are too many things that spectators could use as weapons and the fire protection measures are not adequate.

“Clear deficiencies” were found in the stadiums in Hamburg, Frankfurt/Main, Dortmund and Stuttgart. Points of criticism are for example that there are not enough possible escape routes, there is a high risk of stumbling, and fire protection measures are inadequate. Some stadiums still do not comply with the basic principle of the FIFA Safety Regulations, in accordance with which the stadiums “must be state-of-the-art in terms of their safety provisions concerning structural and technical aspects”.

The stadiums in Hanover, Nürnberg and Colgone are indeed proof that it is possible to reduce the potential congestion risk by means of structural measures. Only minor safety deficiencies were found in these two stadiums and the Allianz Arena in Munich.

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