How to Survive a Mass Shooting at a Concert

How to Survive a Mass Shooting at a Concert

Of course, we should never go to a concert assuming that a mass shooting is going to happen, BUT that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prepare yourself for the worst and learn how to survive a mass shooting at a concert.

When you arrive at the venue, and you’re either in your assigned seat or standing in a crowd if it’s an outdoor concert, visualize your surroundings.  Look around and make sure you know where all the regular exits are and also the emergency fire exits.  This is the first step to prepare yourself.  Now that you have that obvious escape route in your head, let us look at some more tips if an active shooter event arrises.

Here are some potentially life-saving tips if terror erupts at a concert.

1 – Don’t Assume Its Fireworks

You should never assume that loud bangs are fireworks. Apparently, that’s what many fans at the Las Vegas music festival though.  Your first action should be.

  • Don’t wait, start moving because each additional shots fired could mean more injuries and also more deaths.
  • Start moving to the outskirts, do not run towards the middle of the venue where there’s a more significant density of people.
  • Do not follow the crowd.  Run the opposite direction because we have to assume the shooter wants to kill as many people as they can and will keep firing where there’s a higher number of people together in the same area.
  • Hide behind objects as fast as you can.  Run behind a tree, table, car, or even statue, anywhere but the center of the venue.  Most time our instincts will tell us to follow the group, but remember these tips and follow this logic and not your instincts in a scenario such as this.
 2 – Listen For a Pause in Gunfire

A pause in gunfire could indicate the shooter is reloading their weapons.  When the gunman is reloading, Run!  You might only have seconds when they are reloading, maybe 3 seconds or even 10 seconds.  That’s enough time to run from thirty to sixty feet. That could make the difference between life or death.  Just remember to scatter,  the shooter will almost always be shooting towards the more prominent groups.

3 – Stay Calm and Quiet

If the concert is indoor and has a more intimate crowd, then try to find a place to hide and stay as calm and as quiet.   Some people survived the Orlando Night Club shooting in 2016 by doing just that.  An active shooter will always look for the easy targets so try to blend in with anything as best as you possibly can.

4 – Fight (Only if your life is in danger)

If you know, the shooter is on its way in the area that you’re in, and your life is in immediate danger then you need to fight.

  • Attempt to incapacitate the shooter
  • Act with physical aggression
  • Improvise Weapons
  • Fully commit to your actions

You can transform almost anything into a weapon.  Try to find something to that could disrupt the shooters ability to see, breath or control their gun.  A fire extinguisher could work if there is one in your vicinity.

5 – Assist The Injured

Assist the injured if its safe to do so.  If you can’t make your way to the nearest exit and the person you’re helping can walk, then find a room or a confined area you can lock down and secure.  You should administer first aid if you know how to do so.  There might be a first aid kit close by, and there could also be an instruction booklet tucked inside.  The most important thing to remember before administering first aid is to protect yourself first by wearing the proper PPE (Personal Protective Equipment).  The person you’re helping is most likely bleeding from a gunshot wound, and you do not want to contaminate yourself with their blood if this person has an infection.

6 – Concealed Weapon

Whether you’re for or against owning a gun, someone carrying a concealed weapon during a mass shooting could take action and in turn, save lives.  Some survivors of the Movie Theatre shooting in Colorado said that when the shooting started, all they could think about was “I hope that someone in here has a concealed handgun license.”  No one did, or no one chose to use their weapon if they had one.  We are not condoning that you should run off and buy a gun in the event of something like this happening to you.  It makes us all wonder if it could change the course of events if someone had a concealed weapon and decided to use it on the shooter.

If you do decide to fire your concealed weapon at the shooter, that will make your location their prime target.   Make sure you don’t miss because chances are, you’ll be the next one to die.  However, you do have the element of surprise in your favor.  Most gunman would never expect someone in the crowd to shoot at them.  Reason for this is that its thought that most people do not have the necessary skills, or hardware to stop them.  Especially in the western world.

Even if you’re just one person shooting back, you could cause a lot of chaos in the ranks of the enemy.  That course of action might get you killed, but at least you’ll die a hero for being the only person at the concert that tried to stop the shooter, and potentially save lives.


Most active shooting events are over within ten to fifteen minutes.  When the police arrive, their first priority is to take down the shooter, not assist the injured.  The medical personnel will only come and help the wounded after the shooter has been neutralized, or is known to be in a different location. With all of that said, the chances of you being caught in the middle of a mass shooting event is very low.  You have a greater chance being struck by lightning than die during a mass shooting event.

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