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Making sure haunted houses are safe

Posted at 8:11 PM, Oct 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-20 20:11:50-04

It's a big weekend for people planning on going to a haunted house or two. 

Big crowds are expected across South Florida and event staff are gearing up to keep you safe.

Fright Nights at the South Florida Fairgrounds is the largest venue in Palm Beach County and requires visitors to get their bags checked and for people to go through metal detectors.

Director of Safety & Security Randy Hoffer says these procedures aren't new but they are being reinforced.

"Safety is a dynamic situation, it's always changing. We pay very close attention to things like Las Vegas, and even though it's a far way from here, we're concerned and it's our job to make sure there is safe time to be had here."

Fright Nights has deputies on site, just like the South Florida Fair. Staff undergo rigorous training before, just like the people at the Enigma Haunt in Boca Raton.

"Every person has to go through the safety training or else, you can't act," Billy Groeneveld, co-owner of the Enigma Haunt said.

Groeneveld is a member of the Haunted Attractions Association and takes the training seriously. 

"If something were to happen in another state, it affects the whole industry," Groeneveld said.

The Enigma Haunt has 24 cameras, officers, paramedics and other first responders on staff. "

As a member of the Haunted Attractions Association Groeneveld says everyone has to take crisis training seriously.

"The state does very detailed inspections, they're very helpful."

In its 13 years, X-Scream Halloween at the G-Star School of the Arts in Palm Springs has never had an incident, and their staff is mainly students.

"That's why you have to have constant observation," George Colavecchio said. " I have personnel up on top and they can see every square inch of the haunt."

G-Star students are trained to evacuate the building within 30 seconds, they also have an interesting perspective because aside from their training for the haunt, they serve as actors during mass casualty drills conducted by law enforcement. 

Bottom line: These haunt say they will keep you safe and hope you'll give them a try before Halloween.