Safety and security in the PCC

Bezpecnost na prvnim misteThe issue of security is self-evident for a building that annually hosts many international events with a large number of participants. Naturally, it is also a fundamental question on the part of the organisers. For the security teams of the Prague Congress Centre, the protection of visitors is a priority and is based on careful prevention before the start of every major or international event.

PCC has its own team of experienced workers who are regularly trained and certified. Security is handled by several departments:
  • Security department - the main centre is the PCC security control room, which manages the processes and procedures of physical security using the most modern technologies, which are constantly adapted to new trends
  • IT department – responsible for cyber security
  • PCC Fire Brigade - located directly in the building, its main task is to ensure fire protection in the PCC area and fire protection conditions during events taking place in the congress centre

Over the years, the security teams had the opportunity to experience both real crisis situations and, for example, the largest anti-terrorist exercise in the Czech Republic, in which all components of the Integrated Rescue System participated. The Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU, the Annual Meeting of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group, when important delegates from all over the world gathered in Prague, were also a major security challenge. All these experiences, together with the necessary cooperation with IRS, make PCC a place where you need not be afraid to organise even the most important meetings.

Own Fire Brigade Unit  

Vlastni hasicska jednotkaThere is a fire brigade unit based directly in the Prague Congress Centre building. The necessity of its existence in the premises of the building was already established during the construction of PCC itself (1976-1981). This is because of the complexity of the building and special technologies that not seen anywhere else, which need constant supervision, and also because of the number of people who are in the building. Firefighters act as a first instance, if, for example, someone falls ill during a congress, since they are able to provide first aid and stabilise the person until the emergency services arrive.

Safety steps to take before holding international events

Bezpecnostni kroky pred konanim mezinarodnich akciThe Fire Brigade has excellent knowledge of the building complex. In total, there are 3,500 doors and 2,000 rooms on the premises. A big advantage of the Prague Congress Centre is that the building is divided into three parts and has a total of 11 entrances. It is thus relatively simple to separate international events of a risky nature from other sectors and thus ensure safe spaces. Before such events take place, all rooms must be carefully checked for a possible terrorist attack. The basis for this is a pyrotechnic inspection with specially trained dogs that look for dangerous substances. The state of the air is also measured to see if there are no toxic substances present in it. After the pyrotechnic inspection, the security of the building is taken over by the Police of the Czech Republic, however, firefighters are always ready in case an intervention is necessary.

Firefighters work closely with the technical control room, which controls all technologies in the building – hot water, heating, ventilation, air-conditioning. In the event of a large event, a so-called perimeter is created around the building - a protective zone established by the Police, and depending on the size of the event, the Brigade also cooperates with the fire and rescue department of the Capital City of Prague.

The largest anti-terrorist exercise in the Czech Republic

In 2018, the largest anti-terrorist exercise in the Czech Republic – Demon - took place in PCC. The Police of the Czech Republic, 40 paramedics of the rescue system and other components of the Integrated Rescue System took part in the event. In front of the Prague Congress Centre, firefighters, paramedics, and units of the Police of the Czech Republic (e.g., the Rapid Deployment Unit) arrived. A police helicopter also flew over the building, landing task forces on the roof. The units on site rehearsed the biggest anti-terrorist operation in the Czech Republic to date. During the event, several dozen terrorists attacked the Prague Congress Centre according to a pre-prepared scenario and took over two thousand hostages.
Cviceni Demon
Cviceni Demon


Evacuation also belongs to the competence of the Fire Brigade. It is carried out in the event of a fire, in case of danger to persons, or, for example, if a bomb is reported to have been placed in the building. These situations are always resolved in cooperation with the Integrated Task Force System. The leader of the intervention decides on the procedure for solving the whole situation, the evacuation itself is carried out by the firefighters. Evacuation drills are regularly carried out at PCC, during which all persons in the building must be escorted out of the building in the shortest time possible.

Selected significant events at PCC

Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU

In 2009 and 2022, PCC served as one of the main scenes of the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU for six months, which was very demanding in terms of ensuring security and required the cooperation of several security and armed forces (Police of the Czech Republic, Municipal Police, Army of the Czech Republic, Fire and Rescue Service of the Czech Republic, and others).

Meeting of the International Monetary Fund

In 2000, a meeting of the International Monetary Fund took place in the congress centre. During the five days that the event took place, it was necessary to close a large area with a protective zone up to a distance of 500 m from the building. The Corinthia Hotel, the Czech Police building, etc. also fell into this zone. For security reasons, the subway and the highway also had to be closed due to thousands of protesters from all over Europe. This is how the Head of the Fire Brigade at the time, Zdeněk Tintěra, remembers the incident: "Certain groups reached the petrol station near the building, where they threw two pavement stones. Naturally, we were afraid that someone would throw a firebomb there. It was very important to us that all 3,500 delegates were safe. We secured intake areas so that no dangerous substances – not even smoke bombs – got into the building. In the end, we managed the event very well and no intervention was needed."

© Prague Congress Centre