BB&T Center first NHL arena to receive WELL Health-Safety Rating as Panthers prioritize fan safety ahead of new season

A general view of BB&T Center prior to the game between the Florida Panthers and the Carolina Hurricanes on October 08, 2019 in Sunrise, Florida.
A general view of BB&T Center prior to the game between the Florida Panthers and the Carolina Hurricanes on October 08, 2019 in Sunrise, Florida. (2019 Getty Images)

SUNRISE, Fla. – When hockey returns to South Florida and fans are once again permitted to fill the BB&T Center, they can rest assured that the arena is safe place to be in regard to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The Florida Panthers’ home building is the first NHL arena to receive the WELL Health-Safety Rating for Facility Operations and Management.

This certification comes from the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), which has strict guidelines and protocols for combating and preventing the spread of COVID-19 and safely accommodating fans inside public venues.

“The health and safety of our BB&T Center family, guests and community is the single most important thing as we look towards reopening our doors,” said Florida Panthers COO Sean McCaffrey in a statement released by the team.

The IWBI Task Force on COVID-19 is a governing body that utilizes information from a plethora of trusted resources, including the World Health Organization and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The task force provides a centralized source for safety standards and works to validate health and safety efforts made by building owners and operators in preparing their venues for employees and fans following the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Achieving the WELL Health-Safety Rating, which serves as the global benchmark for best operating procedures to help combat COVID-19, is a testament to our team’s tireless efforts,” said McCaffrey, who singled out BB&T Center General Manager Tom Embrey and his work “to ensure the safest possible environment for our guests, players and employees when we reopen.”

There are five core achievement areas that the WELL Health-Safety Rating focuses on; air and water quality management, cleaning and sanitation procedures, emergency preparedness programs, health service resources and stakeholder engagement and communication.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored how critically important it is to prioritize health and safety in the spaces where we gather,” said WELL President and CEO Rachel Hodgdon. “By achieving the WELL Health-Safety Rating, the Florida Panthers and BB&T Center have demonstrated incredible leadership in directly supporting the health, safety and overall well-being of players, fans, employees and their broader community.”

To learn more about the WELL Health-Safety Rating, click here.

You can also click here for more information on the IWBI Task Force on COVID-19.

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