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8 dead, hundreds hurt as Travis Scott’s Astroworld Festival turns into mass casualty incident Friday night

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — Eight individuals died Friday night and hundreds of others had been injured throughout the opening night of a well-liked weekend music pageant at NRG Park, authorities mentioned.It occurred on the third-annual Astroworld Festival, a sold-out live performance occasion that includes a number of acts.

WATCH: Skeye13 exhibits aftermath of Astroworld Festival’s mass casualty

The worst of the incident started round 9:15 p.m. when the group of roughly 50,000 concert-goers started to maneuver towards the entrance of the stage, in accordance with Houston Fire Chief Samuel Peña.”The crowd began to compress toward the front of the stage, and people began to panic,” Peña mentioned.

The view from SkyEye overhead Friday night confirmed the heavy police and fireplace division exercise within the space of the occasion as organizers ended it early. The organizers, rapper Travis Scott and LiveNation, stopped the present when it was obvious that a number of individuals had been hurt, in accordance with Houston Police Chief Troy Finner.

WATCH: ABC13 prolonged protection of the catastrophe at Astroworld Festival

While probably the most lethal moments occurred after 9:30 p.m., Peña mentioned greater than 300 sufferers whole had been handled at a subject hospital because the occasion started, together with individuals who had been hurt throughout the worst moments. While names of the casualties weren’t recognized, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner mentioned the victims ages ranged from 14 to 27-years-old.
Authorities weren’t but positive of the age of one of many eight victims.

Houston Fire Department and Harris County medics transported 25 individuals to hospitals, 17 of these sufferers had been taken away throughout the worst of the ordeal, in accordance with Peña, who additionally mentioned CPR needed to be carried out on 11 of the victims. HFD had 55 models in-service for the pageant, Peña mentioned.

By Saturday afternoon, 13 had been nonetheless hospitalized, Turner mentioned. Five of these sufferers had been underneath 18-years-old.

Festival founder Travis Scott, a rapper and Missouri City native, was joined on stage by Drake in a shock look as the group surged.

HPD Executive Assistant Chief Larry Satterwhite was on-duty on the pageant together with 367 cops and 241 safety officers. He gave his first-hand account throughout an early morning press convention.

“Once we started having the mass casualty incident, they were starting CPR on several people, and it happened all at once,” Satterwhite mentioned. “It seemed like it happened over the course of just a few minutes. Suddenly, we had several people down on the ground experiencing some type of cardiac arrest or some type of medical episode.”

Medical transports had been already on the park for the multi-day pageant, however employees was shortly overwhelmed with injured individuals, authorities mentioned.

Investigators had been dispatched to hospitals Saturday morning in an try and establish the victims. The Harris County Medical Examiner’s Office will decide how the eight individuals died.

The remainder of the weekend’s deliberate performances had been canceled, and the realm is was cordoned off as against the law scene.

“At some point, the show was stopped when the crowd was surging,” Finner mentioned as he famous the occasion’s promoters had been cooperating with investigators.

WATCH: City and county leaders give replace on Astroworld Festival mass casualty incidentIt wasn’t but clear what brought about the deaths or accidents. Finner early Saturday shot down any early hypothesis concerning the a number of fatalities, an assertion repeated by metropolis and county leaders throughout a Saturday afternoon briefing.

“There are a lot of rumors on social media,” Turner mentioned. “Let me caution people not to buy into the rumors. Nothing is off the table in terms of persons who were there, people who fainted, people who were transported. As far as a crowd surge, all of those things are being looked at. It’s way too early to draw any conclusions.”

While Finner joined others in cautioning the general public from hypothesis, he did affirm studies that somebody could have been injected with a needle throughout the melee.

“We do have a security guard, according to the medical staff that was out and treated him last night, that he was reaching over to restrain or grab a citizen, and he felt a prick on his neck,” Finner mentioned.

The safety guard misplaced consciousness and was handled with Narcan, a drug used to fight the results of opioid overdoses, in accordance with Finner, who added that investigators had been nonetheless making an attempt to find the safety officer concerned.

(*8*) Finner mentioned. “We simply ask that you just give us time to do a correct investigation.

Organizers with Astroworld Festival launched the next assertion early Saturday morning:

Our hearts are with the Astroworld Festival household tonight – particularly these we misplaced and their family members. We are centered on supporting native officers nevertheless we are able to. With that in thoughts the pageant will now not be held on Saturday. As authorities talked about of their press convention earlier, they’re wanting into the series of cardiac arrests that came about. If you’ve gotten any related info on this, please attain out to Houston Police. Thank you to our companions on the Houston Police Department, Fire Department, and NRG Park for his or her response and assist.

11204642 110621 Ktrk Astro Statement -

A reunification heart was arrange at 8686 Kirby Drive close to the South Loop on the Wyndham Houston lodge for relations to attach with their family members who could have attended the pageant. The reunion location, staffed by personnel from Houston Police, the Houston Fire Department and counselors, was established as an info clearinghouse throughout the hours after the incident.

Residents from exterior the Houston-area who have not heard family members who attended the pageant can name 832-393-2991 or 832-393-2990.

While it was too early to know if the deaths or accidents had been the results of prison exercise, Finner mentioned his division investigating any prospects.

“Until we determine what happened, what caused the surge, we don’t know,” Finner mentioned. “We will find out. Is there anything criminal? We don’t know.”

The lethal incident got here hours after a large crowd stormed the perimeter of NRG Park, making a chaotic state of affairs for safety personnel and occasion employees. Finner mentioned the 2 occasions weren’t associated.

WATCH: HFD Chief Sam Pena speaks on mass casualty at Astroworld Fest

SEE ALSO: Stampede at Astroworld fest entry unfolds in entrance of ABC13 crew

Multiple followers had been trampled Friday afternoon as hundreds rushed the occasion’s perimeter, pulling down metallic detectors and a safety screening space. It nonetheless wasn’t clear Saturday if anybody suffered main accidents throughout the earlier incident.

WATCH: Crowd overtakes safety checkpoint at Astroworld Festival

SEE ALSO: Here’s who’ll be at Astroworld Fest this weekend

ABC13 Reporter Mycah Hatfield was close to the doorway Friday afternoon as the mob approached, and mentioned safety personnel had been in a position to transfer some individuals away from the doorway earlier than the group overtook the gates.

The occasion’s 100,000 tickets bought out inside an hour of happening sale again in May.

Travis Scott, the favored rapper and organizer, launched the Astroworld Festival in 2018. Like most different giant occasions, it was canceled in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

WATCH: Travis Scott and Drake carry out throughout the 2021 Astroworld Festival Friday night the place 8 individuals died and hundreds had been injured

ABC13 has reached out to Live Nation Entertainment, the pageant’s promoter, and representatives for Travis Scott.

The rapper launched the next assertion, expressing his heartache over the incident on Saturday morning:

“I’m absolutely devastated by what took place last night. My prayers go out to the families and all those impacted by what happened at Astroworld Festival. Houston PD has my total support as they continue to look into the tragic loss of life. I am committed to working together with the Houston community to heal and support the families in need. Thank you to Houston PD, Fire Department and NRG Park for their immediate response and support. Love you all.”

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