DES MOINES, Iowa -- Las Vegas, Manchester, Paris; mass killings all centered around music. Dan Green, director of the 515 Alive Music Festival says the festival organizers in Vegas must have felt a sense of helplessness.
“The security team at this event couldn't do anything about this, the police at this event couldn't do anything about this. This guy is 1100 feet away 32 floors up. To plan for that is just difficult. It was horrifying. I mean that's absolutely every festival director or anyone who works on a festival's worst nightmare, there's really nothing worse than this” said Green.
Now the attack on the Route 91 Harvest Festival is going to be on the forefront of organizer’s mind when it comes to safety precautions. Green says after the attacks at the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, there was a noticeable boost of security at his festival and others.
Security has been heightened, you know different protocols have taken. We do a lot of wanding, we make sure no one comes in with any metal. With something like this happening now everyone just has to be on their toes even more about different types of scenarios like this. There probably weren't that many people who thought 'what if a shooter was in a hotel or a high rise building just open firing?’” said Green.
The attacks have shaken the music community in general as its seen nights of fun and entertainment turn into killing fields.
“It makes you nervous to think about these things that are supposed to enrich the community and to make our lives better, and to know it's actually taking lives is a really scary thing” said Lindsay Keast.
Keast works for the Des Moines Music Coalition and says despite the idea of looming threats it's important for festival goers to continue to do the things they love.
“For it to hinder and make decisions for us is in a sense helping them win. Talking about them is helping them win, so it's kind of a difficult thing” she said.
Those involved with planning festivals say that having adequate emergency exits is critical to prevent mass casualties. During attacks, there's panic, and people tend to bottle neck at exits.
Green says on his festival grounds at Water Works Park they have six emergency exits including sections of fencing that are able to be unlocked and dropped to allow large numbers of people to get out of the area if need be.