Eyewitnesses to Sunday night’s deadly Las Vegas shooting described rapid gunfire during a performance by singer Jason Aldean at the Route 91 Harvest Festival.
Videos showed terrified concertgoers screaming, fleeing and throwing themselves onto the ground during the attack. Attendees said they saw lifeless and bloody bodies around them. One man described how a stranger died in his arms.
Aldean, who was not injured, was performing a song when the attack began.
“The concert was going on and we heard what sounded like firecrackers going off,” witness Megan Kearny told NBC News. “All of a sudden we heard what sounded like a machine gun and people just started screaming that they were hit and to get down, and about every 20 seconds after that you would hear a round of machine guns, and people just dropping, hundreds of bodies over the ground.”
Joseph Ostunio told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that he and his friends “heard shots ring out and we thought they were fireworks so we stayed. And then all of a sudden they just kept coming and coming.”
One woman said it sounded like “1,000 shots” had been fired.
Approximately 40,000 people attended the concert, per the AP.
Eyewitness videos showed concertgoers diving for cover and fleeing from the scene.
One unidentified woman told CNN that attendees were hiding in every crevice they could find, including under bleachers at the venue and underneath cars parked outside.
“The shots just kept coming,” she said, adding that she saw at least two injured people, one of whom she helped into her car.
Another eyewitness said he saw a man die while he was bringing an injured friend to safety.
“One guy ended up dying in my arms,” the festivalgoer, identified only as Mike, told ABC News.
Another survivor told ABC he took shelter in a small room, fearing for his life.
Gary Mocnik told the Review-Journal that he saw victims being carried in wheelbarrows and pickup trucks in search of medical attention.
“It was chaos,” he said.
Sirius XM host Buzz Brainard, who was at the concert, told NBC News that “people were on the ground, some were injured and some were just getting trampled. People were running as fast and as far as they could as quickly as they could.”
At least 50 people were killed and 200 wounded in the attack ― the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history, authorities said. Names of victims weren’t immediately released.
Sheriff Joe Lombardo of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said officers shot and killed the suspect, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, who he described as the “sole aggressor” of the attack.
This article has been updated to include the revised death toll and additional eyewitness accounts.