Coachella Musical Festival to Deploy UAVs in Ramped-Up Security Strategy

“England, San Bernardino, Vegas, Florida, all these horrific events, we gleam something from that,” says Indio Police Dept. Sgt. Dan Marshall when discussing security plans for the Coachella Music Festival.

INDIO, Calif. — Organizers of the Coachella Music Festival, in collaboration with local police, are implementing surveillance drones as part of a security strategy that accounts for attacks and mass casualties at large venues, such as the Route 91 Harvest massacre in Las Vegas.

Ramped up preventative measures at next month’s Coachella 2018 music festival will be more extensive than previous installments, Indio Police Dept. Sgt. Dan Marshall told KMIR-TV, an NBC affiliate. Law enforcement is learning from tragic world events, he said.

“England, San Bernardino, Vegas, Florida, all these horrific events, we gleam something from that,” Marshall said.

Unmanned aerial systems are just one piece to the event’s security plans, which of course include more standard fare such as metal detectors and pat-downs. Life-safety personnel will be fortified to react to an active shooter situation. For example, police will be equipped with tourniquets and other medical equipment to prevent massive blood loss.

Although law enforcement told TMZ there are no known threats, it is out of an abundance of caution. Police and other security personnel are taking training courses to identify items that are out of place. That includes studying the festival grounds and understanding where items such as trash cans are placed. Should a new one suddenly appear, law enforcement will take appropriate steps to immediately investigate.

A massive safety binder serves as the police department’s intricate safety plan, down to the smallest detail, said Sgt. Marshall. “[W]hen I mean everything. I mean everything from food vendors to the trucks that show up, we look at it from every angle.”

He continued: “Remember if somebody is going to do something bad to us, they have to be right every time in their planning. But for the good guys to be right, we only have to be right one time.”

Coachella takes place over the span of two weekends in April and features artists like The Weeknd, Beyonce, Eminem, Cardi B, Migos, SZA and Kygo.

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