New safety concept for the 2016 Oktoberfest
In the light of recent events, the Munich security experts have reevaluated and updated the safety concept for the 2016 Oktoberfest. A security fence will be introduced and backpacks and big bags will be prohibited.
The new measures at the 2016 Oktoberfest
- Backpacks and heavy bags are strictly forbidden,
- a corresponding check is performed at all entrances,
- in addition, access controls and luggage checks (of smaller bags) may be performed there,
- the open flank at the slopeside along Theresienhöhe is closed by means of a security fence in order to prevent avoidance of the checks,
- the entrance at the Theresienwiese subway stop is modified in such a manner that no guests are able to enter the festival area unchecked.
“With the adjusted security measures, we react to recent events without changing the basic character of the Oktoberfest.” – Mayor Josef Schmid
Control of luggage at the Oktoberfest is enforced by prohibiting any bags with a capacity of more than 3 liters. Exceptions will be made for justified causes like for example waitresses, handicapped people, competitive marksmen and members of the parades. Small handbags remain legal in general. There will be luggage depositories around the fairground.
Security at the entrances will take care that prohibited luggage won’t be brought to the fairground. This means that the number of stewards will be significantly increased. During peak times, up to 450 security wardens will be on duty. By that, the city of Munich significantly increases their contribution to the Oktoberfest safety partnership.
To keep uncontrolled luggage off fairground limits, the slope at the Theresienhöhe will be closed off by a mobile fence. The security fence can be removed in less than a minute.
The area at the Theresienwiese subway station will be reorganized. Visitors will be guided to the Bavariaring by stewards, signs and a fence. From there, the usual entrances can be accessed.
The ban of backpacks will be added to the Oktoberfest regulations. As before, baby strollers / buggies are not allowed on the festival grounds on Saturdays, “German Unity Day” and past 6pm on any other day. Still prohibited: Glass bottles, pressurized cans with potentially dangerous, corrosive or coloring contents and items that could be used as a thrusting, cutting or clubbing weapon.
Mayor Josef Schmid about the adjusted safety concept:
“I’m glad everybody involved could reach consent about a conclusive safety concept for the Oktoberfest. The adapted safety concept adequately reacts to recent events without changing the basic character of the Oktoberfest. The necessary luggage checks can only be enforced without uncontrolled access to the fairground, which alone is reason enough to close the side at the slope at the Theresienhöhe. This will be achieved by a mobile fence, which can be removed in less than a minute. That way, opening a quick escape route is still possible.”
“Our common goal in this new situation was to increase safety at the Oktoberfest”, says Dr. Thomas Böhle from the Department of Public Order. “Recent events like the killing spree at the OEZ and the bombing at Ansbach made us reevaluate the Oktoberfest safety concept. Banning backpacks and big bags from the fairground is an essential part of that. However, there is no guarantee for total safety anywhere.”