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Creating a safety plan for a day at the Pima County Fair

Published: Apr. 23, 2022 at 10:27 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Safety is top of mind for many people at this year’s Pima County Fair, especially as large crowds are expected after two years without. Local law enforcement and fair officials are advising people to be safe and aware of their surroundings with the rush of people.

One of their biggest concerns this weekend is the kids. In big crowds, it’s easy for kids to get lost and separated from their families.

“We haven’t been in a while so it’s nice to be back after a COVID absence. We pair up and make sure we’re with at least one other person of the family. That helps a lot,” parent Chas Stiening said.

But, family-friendly night at the fair could turn into a nightmare for parents if they get separated from their child. So, it’s important to have a plan just in case.

“Find a parent that has children and ask them to take you to security. That’s our rule,” Stiening explained.

There are some things you can do before going to the fair to keep your child safe, like writing your phone number on a piece of paper and putting it in their pocket or bag. That way if they get lost, they have your number if they don’t have it already memorized.

“When you get to the fair, you actually take a picture of your child so if you become separated you have the most recent photo of them and what they’re wearing that way the photo can be disseminated to other deputies there,” Deputy Tyler Legg said.

And because of the bigger crowds, Pima County Sheriff’s Department has patrols inside the fair, in the parking lots, and conducting traffic to watch for thefts and possible drunk drivers.

Big events like the fair can be primetime for car break-ins, so PCSD also says to make sure you’re not leaving anything valuable in your car.

Fair wristband technology can also help if you’ve gotten separated from your child.

When these wristbands are purchased together, you can track each one and determine where your child was last.

“If you have an agreement to meet at 5, 6, 7 and that person doesn’t show up, you can go over to guest services and with that barcode we can tell you your son was just playing the Ringabout game at this location,” RCS Carnival Vice President Chris Lopez said.

Fair officials and parents say the wristband tech has been invaluable to them and gives them peace of mind.

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