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Australians Tell Of Sheer Chaos In Aftermath Of Las Vegas Shooting

It's not yet known if any Australians have been killed or injured.

02/10/2017 10:30 PM AEDT | Updated 03/10/2017 9:12 AM AEDT
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The aftermath of the shooting in Vegas.

Australians have told of their terrifying experiences in the wake of a deadly shooting in Las Vegas, in which scores died and more than 500 people were left injured.

The Simpson family, from Melbourne, was about to leave the Mandalay Bay hotel on Sunday when the shooting began. Melinda Simpson, who was with her husband and two children told the ABC of the sheer chaos and horror as thousands of people ran towards the gaming floor of the nearby MGM casino where people were screaming about a "shooter".

Speaking to the ABC hours later, Simpson said thousands of people were running inside the MGM, many with blood streaming down their faces.

"There was a woman with ripped jeans and blood on her knees. "I said to her, 'You OK?'. She just yelled at me and said, 'People don't f**king care, they tried to squash me to get out'," Simpson told the ABC.

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Melinda Simpson and family were caught up in the stampede to get to safety.

"She was swearing and crying. She said, 'People didn't give a shit they just ran over me'. I could just feel the terror in her voice."

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has told Seven's Sunrise program that no Australians are known to have been killed or injured in the attack.

"At this stage no Australians have been identified as amongst the victims are other those killed or injured," Bishop said.

"However, given the large number of people involved, we are still making urgent inquiries of authorities and hospitals to ensure that no Australians are involved. The situation is still very fluid, but we've hosted our consular team to make sure we can identify all Australians who have been in the area."

Bishop told ABC radio support would be provided "wherever we can" to Australians caught up in the attack. She also said it was "not possible to say" how many Australians are in Las Vegas at present.

Bishop has tweeted a phone number Australians can call if they are worried about a loved one.

Australian concertgoer Cailin Anning told the Seven Network she and her friends were fortunate that they'd just gone to the bathroom and were in the VIP area, towards the back of the festival when they heard the first round of gunshots.

"The music hadn't stopped at that point so we were confused and weren't sure what we were hearing, it sounded like fireworks," Anning told Sunrise.

When Anning and her friends realised what was happening they ended up hiding behind the portable toilets and scaling the septic tanks to safety.

Seven News reporter Ashlee Mullany was sleeping in her room at the Mandalay Hotel when gunshots began a few floors above her.

Mullany told Seven News she looked out her window and she saw dozens of police cars.

"That's when I realised it was something serious so we went down to the lobby. It was chaotic and it was scary. But I have to say compared to what the people in that concert witnessed, seeing and hearing the most unimaginable..it is beyond comprehensible," Mullany said.

"And to think what this lone gunman, this lone wolf has carried out."

A former Gold Coast man, who was staying at the Mandalay Bay hotel, had a close call with the gunman.

Brian Hodge believes he was in the room next door. He told reporters he was staying in room 32134, with the gunman in room 32135.

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Brian Hodge has spoken of his terrifying ordeal. He believes he was staying in the room next to the gunman.

According to the Adelaide Advertiser Hodge escaped the hotel and hid with others in some bushes for several hours.

"There were multiple people dead and multiple shooters. I was just hiding waiting for police to come get us," Hodge said.

"We were hiding in the bushes outside waiting for the police. It was a machine gun from the room next to me. My floor is a crime scene. They killed a security guard on my floor."

Gold Coast bar owner Nathan Claridge told the Gold Coast Bulletin he'd just left work when he came across people running and diving for cover amid the gunshots.

"I have never been involved in something like that before. It was nuts. It was surreal, it was like 'Is this really happening?" Claridge said.

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Gold Coast nightclub owner Nathan Claridge was leaving work when he heard the gunshots and witnessed people running for their lives.

Another Queensland man, Pat Shaw, said he and his friends were playing roulette at the Mandalay Bay Casino when people started running past their table.

Shaw told The Courier Mail they didn't realise what was going on until they saw a SWAT team and dozens of police.

"As it happened we heard the staff and security say they think there is a shooter out the front and then (they said) it was up on a high level, shooting down at the Route 91 music festival," Shaw told the Courier Mail.

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Pat Shaw was in the gaming room of the MGM when it was suddenly overtaken by screaming people and SWAT teams.

Shaw said everyone was ordered to leave the gaming area and were taken to a secure lockdown zone where they stayed for several hours.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has spoken about the tragedy and given his condolences to those who have lost friends and family members.


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