Very early Sunday morning, the city of Cincinnati was hit with a colossal tragedy. A fight at a local club, “Cameo”, turned into a shootout that left one dead, two in intensive care, and a total of 16 injured. Where there’s alcohol, these things can happen, and it’s important to be aware of your surroundings, and even more important to stay safe if something does break out. There are practical things you can do before and during a bar fight to help keep you and your loved ones safe.
Prepare And Be Aware
- Introduce yourself to the bouncer, maybe learn his name. It may seem weird, but being on a first name basis with a bouncer can be a good thing if the situation devolves into outright chaos. They’re there to protect you and the bar. Help them do their jobs.
- Always know where your exits are. If something does break out, there will be a mass of people heading for the main entrance/exit. Try and find an alternate exit, one that most won’t be using.
- If possible, sit as close to that exit as you can. If something does escalate, you want to be as close to that exit as possible. Knowing where the exits are does you no good if they’re 40 yards away through a throng of around 70-80 people.
- Have someone not be completely hammered. If you’re going to a bar, then you’re probably going to drink. Odds are you’re going to be having more than one drink. We live in an age of Uber and taxis, so a designated driver isn’t totally necessary to get home safe. However, it’s good to have someone in your group with a level head.
If A Fight Does Break Out
- Stay away, do not become a spectator. Humans have this strange tendency to form a massive circle around two people about to fight, or to try and get a better look. This is almost always a bad idea. Even if the fight doesn’t turn lethal, there’s always a chance that you could catch a wayward elbow, or get run over by a mass of people trying to clear the area fast. If it does turn lethal, you’re now in the crossfire.
- If you’re friends aren’t involved, don’t try and break it up, don’t be a hero, get your people and leave. You might feel an urge to go break up the fight. You should fight this urge with all your might. This isn’t running away from a fight. You’re at the bar or the club to have a good time with your friends. You’re not at the bar or the club to get in a fight. You’re not a coward, you’re just smart. There’s a reason why bars have security and bouncers, they’re there to deal with these situations.
- So, what if it’s one of my friends about to get in a fight? Don’t jump in and escalate the fight. There’s no reason to jump in and start swinging yourself, get your friend out of the situation. No one likes to go to jail because they had a drunken lapse of judgment.
- What if the fight’s already started? You do the bare minimum in terms of violence that you need to do to separate the two and then get them out of there. You need to make it very clear that you’re there to get your friend out, not wading into the fray.
Prior Proper Planning Prevents Piss-Poor Performance
It’s a mantra I’ve heard a lot, and something to take to heart. If you’re at a bar or a club, these things have a chance of happening. While it’s not really likely to happen, it could, and having the proper planning in place could prevent something very bad happening to you and your friends. Resist the urge to be a spectator, keep a level head, and always know where your exits are.