Second shelter-in-place in two days for Balloon Fiesta

Balloon Fiesta Park faced the second consecutive shelter in place during Saturday night’s balloon glow. KOAT was on the scene when the first shelter-in-place was called on Friday evening. There were around 50,000 people at Balloon Fiesta Park on Friday night for the glow. Within minutes, the park turned into chaos as tens of thousands of people rushed to get out as soon as possible. KOAT spoke to the balloon party and emergency officials about how they are working to keep people safe if this happens again. Chrisiann Gray was at Friday night’s event. “It really was a chaotic rush of people. I’m surprised no one got run over. There was a guy on speakerphone saying, ‘evacuate the park, evacuate the park’, but they didn’t. didn’t say why,” Gray said. At around 7:40 a.m. Friday night, a notification went public ordering everyone to evacuate the park as soon as possible. Gray said, “We had no idea s ‘It was a lightning strike or a shooting.’ . Michael Meisinger was at the scene and was involved in the decision to send this notification. was acting as shelter-in-place related to the weather.” It might not have been something they were expecting, but it was really terrible,” Gray said. Garrity says there are several things which need to change in case something like this happens again.. We also need to make sure that all of our guests know exactly where they are. t reunification centres. This is something Balloon Fiesta will continue to learn as we move forward and throughout the next 50 years,” Garrity said. There was an immediate change in messaging for Saturday’s shelter-in-place. Saturday afternoon, the Balloon Fiesta posted a tweet saying, “Severe weather expected at Balloon Fiesta Park: Seek shelter in cars, tents, buildings or buses which will be located at the north end of the field.” Garrity also says the fiesta will limit the number of passes they give out to create a clear line of traffic for emergency buses next year.

Balloon Fiesta Park faced the second consecutive shelter in place during Saturday night’s balloon glow. KOAT was on the scene when the first shelter-in-place was called on Friday evening. There were around 50,000 people at Balloon Fiesta Park on Friday night for the glow. Within minutes, the park turned into chaos as tens of thousands of people rushed to get out of it.

KOAT spoke to the balloon party and emergency officials about how they are working to keep people safe if this happens again.

Chrisiann Gray was at the event Friday night.

“It was really a chaotic rush of people. I’m surprised no one got run over. There was a guy on the loudspeaker saying ‘evacuate the park, evacuate the park’, but they didn’t say why,” Gray said. .

Around 7:40 a.m. Friday night, a notification went public ordering everyone to evacuate the park as soon as possible.

Gray said, “We had no idea if it was a flash or if it was something like a gunfight.”

Albuquerque Police Deputy Cmdr. Michael Meisinger was on the scene and was involved in the decision to send this notification.

“We immediately said we needed to clarify this message. The pre-planned message that was sent to evacuate was not enough,” Meisinger said.

Twenty minutes later, they sent another notification saying it was weather-related shelter-in-place.

“It might not have been something they expected, but it was really terrible,” Gray said.

Tom Garrity is the fiesta’s spokesperson. Garrity says there are several things that need to change in case something like this happens again.

“This is the first time anyone from a Balloon Fiesta can remember an event like this. We need to change the way we use Emergency Broadcast System alerts. We also need to ensuring that all of our guests know exactly where the reunification centers are is something that Balloon Fiesta will continue to learn as we move forward and over the next 50 years,” said Garrity.

There was an immediate change in messaging for Saturday’s shelter-in-place. On Saturday afternoon, the Balloon Fiesta posted a tweet saying, “Severe weather expected at Balloon Fiesta Park: Seek shelter in cars, tents, buildings or buses which will be located at the north end of the grounds.”

Garrity also says fiesta will limit the number of passes they give out to create a clear line of traffic for emergency buses next year.