Astroworld Organizers Noted 'Ever-Present Threat' of 'Mass Casualty Situation' Months Ago: Report

In security plans made months in advance, staff were reportedly told to use the code word "Smurf" when alerting about a possibly dead concertgoer and "never use the term 'dead' or 'deceased' over the radio"

Astroworld organizers reportedly planned for the possibility of a "mass casualty situation" months before the deadly concert where eight people were killed on Friday night in Houston.

According to The New York Times, at least two documents about emergency planning were made months in advance of the concert, with one accounting for protocol for such things as inclement weather, riots or active shooters. The other dealt with medical response measures. PEOPLE has yet to view said memos.

One part of the plans, per the news outlet, told staffers that when they wanted to alert event control about a "suspected deceased victim" to use the code word "Smurf" and to "never use the term 'dead' or 'deceased' over the radio."

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At another point in the plans, it read, "Based on the site's layout and numerous past experiences, the potential for multiple alcohol/drug-related incidents, possible evacuation needs, and the ever-present threat of a mass casualty situation are identified as key concerns."

Eight people died and more than 300 were treated for injuries following chaos that unfolded at approximately 9:15 p.m. on Friday, when fans in the crowd of about 50,000 began to rush the stage. Police are investigating, and no charges have been brought.

Travis Scott performs during 2021 Astroworld Festival
Travis Scott performs during 2021 Astroworld Festival. Erika Goldring/WireImage

Performer Travis Scott (who was arrested in 2017 for allegedly inciting a riot during a concert in Arkansas and later pled guilty to disorderly conduct) faced accusations from festival goers on Saturday who claimed he continued to perform even after seeing distraught and injured fans in the audience.

Travis Scott performs during 2021 Astroworld Festival at NRG Park on November 05, 2021 in Houston, Texas.
Travis Scott. Erika Goldring/WireImage

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Scott, 30, told fans Saturday night he and his team have "been working closely with everyone to get to the bottom of this — City of Houston HPD, fire department — everyone, to help us figure this out," and told fans to contact authorities with any information.

"Everybody continue to keep your prayers," the rapper said. "I mean, I'm honestly just devastated and I could never imagine anything like this happening. I'm going to do everything I can to keep you guys updated and keep you guys informed of what's going on. Love you all."

Kylie Jenner — who faced backlash on Saturday for a since-deleted Instagram Story that showed an ambulance in the crowd — also addressed accusations that Scott, a Houston native, ignored distraught fans who were begging him to stop the show.

"I want to make it clear we weren't aware of any fatalities until the news came out after the show and in no world would have continued filming or performing," she shared.

An Astroworld attendee told PEOPLE, "When Travis finally comes out, people are moving even more, getting rowdier. It just felt like so much pressure as people got excited. … I was literally getting squished, very uncomfortable. It felt like I was going to die."

The eyewitness added, "I couldn't enjoy it because I seriously could not breathe. I had to turn away from the stage at points to just breathe. My shoulders were in people's back, I was pressed against people."

Astroworld organizers said in a statement on Twitter over the weekend: "Our hearts are with the Astroworld Festival family tonight — especially those we lost and their loved ones. We are focused on supporting local officials however we can. With that in mind the festival will no longer be held on Saturday."

NRG Park, the venue where Astroworld was held, said, "We are deeply saddened by the heartbreaking loss of life and the pain experienced by all those impacted by this tragedy. We are fully cooperating and working closely with police and local authorities as they investigate how this tragedy occurred at the Astroworld Festival.

Since the incident, however, Scott has been named in one of what is expected to be several lawsuits over the mass casualty incident.

Injured concertgoer Manuel Souza filed a petition Saturday in Harris County District Court against Scott over what the petition describes as the "predictable and preventable" tragedy that unfolded, according to the court document obtained by PEOPLE. He's seeking at least $1,000,000 in damages and also asking for a temporary restraining order to prevent any destruction of evidence. The lawsuit also names Live Nation, organizer ScoreMore, Scott's Cactus Jack Records and several others.

Reps for Scott and Live Nation did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

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