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Multiple deaths in crowd surge at Texas concert

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Houston authorities are investigating what officers described as a crowd surge that killed at the least eight folks and injured “scores” of others throughout the annual Astroworld music pageant in Houston whereas rapper Travis Scott carried out.

Officers declared a “mass casualty incident” at 9:38 p.m. Friday native time throughout the pageant at NRG Park, the place an estimated 50,000 folks had been in attendance, Houston Hearth Chief Samuel Peña instructed reporters throughout an overnight news briefing.

“The gang started to compress towards the entrance of the stage, and that brought on some panic, and it began inflicting some accidents, stated Peña. “Folks started to fall out, change into unconscious, and it created extra panic.”

As first responders rushed to the scene, 17 folks had been transported to native hospitals, together with 11 who had been in cardiac arrest, the hearth chief stated. There have been scores of different accidents, he added.

Peña stated officers didn’t but know the reason for loss of life for the eight victims. It was not instantly clear whether or not they had been amongst these transported to hospitals.

Many individuals had been additionally handled on the scene, the place a subject hospital had been arrange. About 300 folks had been examined at that website all through the day, stated Peña.

Astroworld promoters had medical personnel and an emergency transport element on the pageant, however “they had been rapidly overwhelmed” because the harm rely mounted at “actually a chaotic occasion,” the hearth chief stated.

Houston Police Chief Troy Finner stated throughout the briefing that investigators didn’t but have identifications for lots of the injured.

In all, 367 cops and 241 safety officers had been assigned to the pageant, stated Finner. There had been an issue with concertgoers who pushed towards the entrance of the stage earlier Friday, however that was rapidly introduced below management and was unrelated to the next tragedy, stated Finner. 

Houston police established a command middle on the Wyndham Resort on Kirby Drive close to the pageant website for data on lacking individuals. Authorities had been attempting to reconnect family with concertgoers who had been transported to the hospital, “some as younger as 10” years outdated, Harris County Decide Lina Hidalgo stated throughout the information briefing.

Astroworld is a two-day music pageant that was was bought out, based on the Astroworld website.

“Our hearts are with the Astroworld Competition household tonight – particularly these we misplaced and their family members,” present promoters tweeted early Saturday. “We’re targeted on supporting native officers nevertheless we are able to.”

The pageant was staging its third 12 months of music. Musicians and artists who had been scheduled to look included Younger Thug and YSL, Dangerous Bunny, Chief Keef, Tame Impala, Earth Wind & Hearth and others, based on the pageant’s web site.

Drake joined Travis Scott on-stage on the live performance — which was live-streamed by Apple Music — and posted photographs to Instagram after the efficiency.

Houston Police Govt Assistant Chief Larry Satterwhite was close to the entrance of the gang and stated it appeared the surge “occurred .”

Travis Scott performs at Day 1 of the Astroworld Music Festival at NRG Park in Houston. on Friday, Nov. 5, 2021.

“Instantly we had a number of folks down on the bottom, experiencing some kind of cardiac arrest or some kind of medical episode,” Satterwhite stated. “And so we instantly began doing CPR, and shifting folks proper then, and that’s after I went and met with the promoters, and Reside Nation, and so they agreed to finish early within the curiosity of public security.”

Finner referred to as for calm and urged folks to not bounce to conclusions as to what brought on the surge.

“I feel it is essential that none of us speculate. No one has all of the solutions tonight,” Finner stated.

“We’ll do an investigation and discover out as a result of it is not honest to the producers, to anyone else concerned, till we decide what occurred, what brought on the surge,” he stated. “We do not know, however we’ll discover out.”

Finner instructed reporters that Scott and the occasion promoters cooperated with police.

The lethal surge was essentially the most deaths at a U.S. live performance because the 2003 Station nightclub hearth that killed 100 folks in Rhode Island.

Eleven folks died and about two dozen had been injured in 1979 at a live performance for The Who as 1000’s of followers tried to get into Cincinnati’s riverfront coliseum.

Contributing: The Related Press

Travis Scott performs at Day 1 of the Astroworld Music Festival at NRG Park in Houston on Friday, Nov. 5, 2021.

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