Manchester Arena operator denies 'sacrificing safety'

Manchester Arena operator denies 'sacrificing safety' before attack in 2017

1/26/2021 7:22:00 PM

Manchester Arena operator denies 'sacrificing safety' before attack in 2017

Lawyers for SMG deny claims it was penny-pinching before the 2017 Manchester Arena attack.

Andrew O'Connor QC, representing SMG, told the inquiry the firm had always accepted responsibility for security in the City Room, where the bomb exploded.But he denied the firm had sought to "blame others," adding it has "simply sort to explain how SMG discharged its responsibilities".

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"It is for that purpose and not for prevarication, finger-pointing or buck passing that we have sought to explain to you SMG's relationship with all the other organisations involved," he added.Mr O'Connor said the company accepted there were "shortcomings" with its written risk assessments but maintained it "did have a system for assessing terrorism-related risk".

image copyrightPA Mediaimage captionThe public inquiry into the bombing will look at whether the attack could have been preventedMr O'Connor said the firm should not be criticised for not extending the arena's security perimeter, or not installing X-ray machines or metal detectors before 2017.

These measures were not commonly used by similar venues at the time and the company was not advised to implement them, he added.He also rejected criticism of the CCTV at the arena, saying it was "adequate or at least in line with applicable guidance or standards".

The inquiry, which began in September, continues. Read more: BBC News (UK) »

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