What’s being done to keep you safe at the air show

Vectren Dayton Air Show. (WDTN Photo/Rob Sneed)
Vectren Dayton Air Show. (WDTN Photo/Rob Sneed)

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — A thrill you can’t find anywhere else.

“I’ve been going to air shows for 40 years and I’m still amazed by their ability,” says spectator Steve Welsh of the pilots.

But when the pilots push the limits does that present a danger to those down below?

“This is really a safe show for spectators,” says Air Show Media Relations Director Timothy Gaffney. “Shows nationwide are safe for spectators.”

But you only need to look back to last year’s show when a crash killed winger walker Jane Wicker and her pilot Charlie Schwenker to understand the danger for performers.

We wanted to know if that crash led to any changes at this year’s show.

“We didn’t have to make any changes because of the crash,” Gaffney says. “There was nothing deficient in our preparations or our emergency response.”

But air show officials say they are making one change related to safety.

“Because of a crash at a different air show, this year performers have been asking us to stage a different response vehicle at show center so we’re doing that at the request of the performers,” Gaffney says.

Another thing they say they’ll be keeping an eye all weekend on is the weather.

“We can give people a warning if there’s bad weather coming,” Gaffney says. “We give them time to take cover if they need to.”

Not everyone will be watching the show this weekend, officials say some will be watching the crowds to make sure everything is going smoothly.

“We have really strong procedures because we work closely with homeland security and the airport and police,” Gaffney says.

Because of security measures, you’re not allowed to bring coolers or loose bags of ice into the show.

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