With summertime comes summer events, with weddings, graduation parties, and family get-togethers being among the most popular. Using party tent rentals to shelter guests is just one choice that hosts have, along with renting tables, chairs, linens, and decorations, too.
Yet with renting a tent comes a certain amount of risk. Although a tent can provide protection from wind, rain, and hot sun, there are safety precautions party hosts most take when relying on one of these structures.
Having the right area for an event is one concern: This August, in Dorset, Vt., a man was cited for crashing into two party tents and a tree at a church.
The man claimed to have fallen asleep at the wheel. He drove away from the scene only to report it to police later. No injuries were reported.
Yet another precaution is the weather, says Scott Weisberg of Everything Entertainment from Mariners Harbor in Staten Island, N.Y.
Because summer is also hurricane season, with heavy thunderstorms in others, keeping guests safe is essential. When renting a tent, Weisberg recommends having a rental company go over any safety concerns you have, along with providing advice on what to do in certain weather conditions.
You don’t need to be an engineer, Weisberg says, “But you should be able to ask questions, so a vendor can explain the precautions that are being taken.” And those answers should be given in terms you understand, too.
Weisberg suggests asking four questions to a party tent rentals company before using one of their products:
- “How will the tent be anchored?” Because wind can carry a tent away if it’s not properly staked to the ground or weighed down, it’s important to know exactly how the tent should be tethered. If the party tent is on paving stones, concrete or asphalt, using concrete blocks is recommended.
- “How much wind is the tent able to withstand? How much will it be set up for?” Engineered tents are created to withstand so many miles per hour of wind (e.g. 120 m.p.h.). However, if there are other variables at play, such as precipitation or exposure, the strength of the tent could be affected.
- “Can an extreme weather evacuation plan be provided?” In the event of an emergency, you’ll need to know exactly when to evacuate a tent and safely dismantle it.
- “Can attendants be provided to oversee the tent during the event, and how much extra will that cost?”If weather is truly a concern, Weisberg recommends having two event attendants to open and close sidewalls, handle turning lights on and off and re-position fans.
Weather is also no excuse to keep the party going, Weisberg explains. Property can always be replaced, and it’s not worth risking injury or death for your party guests.