WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The West Springfield Police Department and The Big E are taking proactive measures to enhance the safety and security of attendees amidst a concerning social media trend involving staged fights.

Over the weekend, two altercations at The Big E were recorded and shared across social media platforms. According to police, information received indicates a rising trend where individuals orchestrate fights primarily to gain attention on platforms like TikTok. This trend has raised alarms, prompting a joint effort to address and mitigate potential incidents.

“There are no more or less fights this year than any other year. It just seems our favorite past time now is to video tape and post it to social media and that’s alarming to people to watch,” said West Springfield Police Sergeant Joe LaFrance.

Authorities are urging the public, as well as local and social media outlets, to be mindful of this growing issue, which is not limited to this region but is being observed across the county. To maintain public safety, The Big E and the West Springfield Police Department are boosting security measures at the fair, particularly during days with substantial foot traffic.

Additional security patrols will be deployed inside The Big E premises, complemented by support from the Massachusetts State Police and the Hampden County Sheriff’s Office. Furthermore, the collaboration extends to neighboring western Massachusetts police agencies offering their K9 services, providing a comprehensive security approach to address the emerging challenges.

Addressing concerns regarding response time, West Springfield police emphasized the vast size of The Big E, which is approximately 175 acres and accommodating tens of thousands of visitors. Officers will be responding in various ways, including on foot, golf carts, and police cruisers, ensuring a safe response without endangering the fairgoers.

The Big E Fair

September 15 to October 1

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