Updated on June 16, 2011
Elements needed to avoid a riot, according to report into 1994 Stanley Cup chaos: “good luck, constant vigilance, co-ordination”
Did the Vancouver Police Department implement the relevant recommendations of a report into the 1994 Stanley Cup riot in Vancouver? Or were some ignored, as the author has claimed?
Ultimately, that question must be resolved by a review conducted by the Vancouver Police Board. But this quote from the Executive Summary of the BC Police Commission Report on the Riot that occurred in Vancuver on June 14-14, 1994 leaps out:
Even if all the recommendations in this report are followed, we cannot guarantee that riots will not occur in the future in this city.
Crowd behaviour is wildly unpredictable in the best of circumstances and the hype that follows major sporting events in this country, combined with a multimillion dollar marketing interest in linking alcohol and sports, is beyond the control of any local jurisdiction, no matter how well co-ordinated.
This means that both luck and constant vigilance and coordination on the part of local authorities (including but not limited to police) will be necessary if we are to avoid such events in the future.