November 7, 20220

This past weekend marked one year since a crowd surge at rapper Travis Scott’s Astroworld music festival in Houston took the lives of 10 concertgoers and injured thousands of others. Although there have been two settlements so far, event organizers and nearly 2,800 alleged victims are in the midst of a multidistrict litigation that is seeking billions in combined damages, claiming that festival promoter Live Nation, Scott and other organizers were legally negligent.According to a report by Gov. Greg Abbott’s Texas Task Force on Concert Safety (TFCS), the outdoor event had permitting issues and unticketed attendees overwhelmed available resources for the sold-out festival.Even though the police investigation is still underway, the TFCS report clearly listed several factors that contributed to the tragedy. With this public information, have concert promoters made any changes to make these large events safer for attendees?Firm co-founder Miguel Custodio told The Independent that concert promoters haven’t done much to improve safety at large events since Astroworld, “They consistently put profits over safety and this is just absolutely disgusting. Until they change their ways, these tragedies will remain a very real threat.”Soon after Astroworld, popular artists like Billie EilishDoja Cat and Adele paused their shows mid-performance to ensure that audience members in need of medical assistance received it immediately. Industry experts call this “show-stop authority,” which is the sliver of good to come after the tragedy in Houston. However, safety advocates are still calling for protocols that ensure fan safety without the need for involvement from the performer.Given the lack of change that we’ve seen in the past year and the recent disaster during a Halloween celebration in Itaewon, Korea, the threat of a crowd crush at any large event is present. Listed below are basic safety tips for if you ever find yourself in a dangerous crowd:

  • How to tell when a crowd is becoming dangerous.
    • Crowd density can shift in a matter of seconds. You can tell that the density is increasing if the crowd is moving and then slows. If you start to feel confined and uncomfortable, it’s time to leave.
  • Sometimes, the crowd is already packed too tightly to leave. If you’re stuck, your priorities are:
    • Stay on your feet.
      • This may be hard with the crowd swaying, so brace yourself and move with the crowd rather than against it – go with the flow.
      • Stay in a boxer-like stance with your feet apart, one foot in front of the other and knees slightly bent.
    • Keep your arms from being pinned by your side.
      • Keep your hands up.
      • Protect your chest.
        • Use your dominant hand to grab your opposite forearm, creating a shield in front of your chest with your elbows as a brace against other bodies. This protects your chest and maintains a breathing zone.
        • If your child is in the crowd with you, put them on your shoulders or hold them and have them wrap their legs around your waist.
    • Conserve oxygen.
      • Shouting is a waste of energy and oxygen. It’s more beneficial to keep quiet and calm.
    • Keep your head up.
      • If you drop something, let it go.
      • If you fall or trip and can’t get back on your feet, go into a fetal position on your left side and protect your head.

Take a look at this short clip for a visual on how to survive a crowd surge.

  • Is it safe to help others?
    • When one person falls, it can result in a domino effect with people falling onto each other. If someone around you falls, try to help them up; it improves everyone’s chances of survival.

When going to an indoor or outdoor event, make sure you’re aware of all exits and surrounding streets in case of an emergency. While it may not be fun to plan what to do in case the crowd gets out of control or a shooting happens, it’s awareness and planning that could end up saving your life.If you have suffered injury or harm due to negligent preparation at a large event, contact the skilled personal injury attorneys at Custodio & Dubey LLP. With over 25 years of experience, our lawyers will guide you at every step of the way to help you receive the justice you deserve.