Houston Marathon Committee, Inc. (HMC) Code of Conduct and Safety Information

Safety is our top priority. The HMC works closely with local public safety agencies to provide a safe and secure event. Please see the important information below from our race officials.

PACKET PICK-UP: All runners must have a valid, government-issued photo ID to pick up their packets. If picking up for a friend, you will need a signed copy of their final confirmation along with an electronic or printed copy of their government-issued photo ID. A photo ID is not required for children 17 and under. 

BAGGAGE INSPECTION: On race weekend, all bags and items may be subject to search. To expedite longer lines and avoid possible bag searches throughout race weekend, the HMC strongly discourages bringing any type of backpacks or large bags other than the race-issued clear Gear Check Bag.

GEAR CHECK: Clear Gear Check Bags will be provided to all registered runners at Packet Pick-Up in the EXPO. Runners may check the clear Gear Check bag in the George R. Brown Convention Center (GRB) on Race Day. Clear bags containing other bags will not be accepted.

START CORRALS: No bags of any kind will be allowed in the start line corrals or on the course. ‘Camelbacks’ or other similar hydration systems are allowed.

RUNNING ETIQUETTE: Be considerate of those around you.  Do not run in groups of more than three abreast. Do not stop abruptly for any reason without being aware of your surroundings.  The wearing of headphones is discouraged, but if you are wearing headphones, be sure you can hear what is going on around you and be aware that emergency vehicles may be on the course at any time.

COURSE TIME LIMITS: Participants are not allowed on the course after the streets are reopened to vehicular traffic. If you fall behind the pace, you will be asked by Houston Police Department to take race-provided transportation to the finish area.

MOBILE DEVICES: Do not stop to take photographs on the race course or on the finish line. The use of selfie sticks is prohibited for your safety and the safety of those around you.

MEDICAL EMERGENCIES: If you see a runner in distress, offer assistance and alert the nearest race official. If the situation appears to be urgent, call 911. Visit our website to learn about Hands-Only CPR and how you can help save a life!

SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING:  If you see suspicious behavior, make the call. Notify a race official, uniformed official or call 911.


To receive important race updates and information in case of an emergency:

Twitter Handle: @HoustonMarathon

  • Visit the HoustonMarathon.com website.
  • Tune to Channel 13 (ABC13) or espn3.com on race day from 7:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
  • Visit abc13.com on race day beginning at 7:00 a.m. to watch a live stream of the elite race and the finish line cameras.

In case of emergency, the above resources will be the best places to receive the latest information about the events.

Houston Marathon Committee, Inc. Prohibited Items/Actions List*

For the safety of our runners, volunteers, spectators, sponsors and vendors, the following items and actions are prohibited from all Houston Marathon Committee, Inc. (HMC) and Houston Marathon Foundation (HMF) events and venues:

  • Weapons of Any kind
    • Firearms; the carrying of firearms is prohibited at all HMC and HMF sanctioned events, in addition, firearms are explicitly prohibited in Discovery Green and in the George R. Brown Convention Center in HMC licensed areas, which include, but are not limited to the EXPO and all race day areas.
      • Please note: There are many venues used throughout race weekend that have their own rules and regulations regarding the carrying of firearms and other items; these rules are beyond the control of the HMC.
    • Knives, including, but not limited to: swords, spears, daggers, sabers, bowie knives, any knife with a blade over five and one-half inches and machetes
    • In addition, any item that could be considered dangerous including, but not limited to: mace, tasers, knives, bats, tools, and sharp objects.
  • Bags
    • Only the official clear bag provided at Packet Pickup will be accepted at Gear Check on race day.
    • No bags of any kind will be allowed in the start corrals or on the course. ‘Camelbacks’ and similar hydration systems are permitted.
    • Except as is provided in this section, the HMC discourages bringing bags of any type.
    • All bags are subject to search.
  • Miscellaneous Items:
    • Costumes that cover the face and any bulky costumes that extend beyond the body
    • Unmanned aircraft systems, drones, photography mini-copters
      • The taking off and flying over of any part of the course is a violation of HMC controlled property and will be considered trespassing. In addition, all photographs and video recordings of the event are considered property of the HMC.
    • Selfie sticks and other hand-held extension poles for cameras and mobile devices that are not attached directly to the user
    • Flammable liquids, fuel, fireworks, flare guns, explosives
    • Alcoholic beverages and illegal substances of any kind
    • Animals, including pets
    • Glass containers
    • Coolers
    • Headphones – the HMC highly discourages the use of headphones on the race courses. If you are wearing headphones, make sure you can hear what is going on around you and be aware that emergency vehicles may be on the course at any time.
    • Strollers, bicycles, roller blades/skates, skateboards, wheelbarrows and wagons
      • Any item with wheels, beyond what is allowed in the Athletes with Disabilities division of the events
    • Props and anything that may pose a tripping or safety hazard or may divert the attention of a runner from the road or other runners on the course
      • Examples include, signs, sports equipment, and oversized flags or flagpoles
    • All participants are subject to the USATF and World Athletics Competition Rules.
  • Bandit Runners
    • Only registered runners wearing their personally assigned bib may participate in the Chevron Houston Marathon, Aramco Houston Half Marathon and We Are Houston 5K.
    • No one is permitted to be on the race courses without an official race bib for the event in which they have been registered.
      • In addition, registered participants are prohibited from crossing the finish line with anyone who is not wearing an official race bib, including children.
    • The Houston Marathon does NOT allow the transfer of registrations/bibs to others.
    • Registered runners who give their bib to another person and the person to whom the bib is given will be disqualified and prohibited from participating in subsequent Houston Marathon events for a minimum of two years.