Houston Crowd Crush
Eight Reported Dead, Hundreds Injured
The Astroworld festival event is now added to the list of preventable crowd crush incidents.
It happened last night around 9:30PM when a crowd of some 50,000 surged toward the front of the stage.
Crowd crush events are too common.
In April of this year, 45 were killed and 150 injured in Meron, Israel, at a religious event when people at the front of the surging crowd slipped on a wet floor and were trampled by those behind.
In September 2015, 2,236 were killed during the annual Hajj Pilgrimage in Mecca. Hajj related crowd disasters are frequent.
Perhaps the best known western crush event is the April 1989 Hillsborough disaster in South Yorkshire, England, when 89 were killed and 766 injured at a football match.
These disasters are often referred to incorrectly as “stampedes” and covered as if they were unavoidable.
After action reports and subsequent litigation point out that controlling large numbers of people is an evolved science and that the events are the result of poorly designed facilities, inadequate planning, and lack of resources and effective communication.
A favorite tactic, and one deployed after the Hillsborough event, is for authorities to blame the attendees, even casting aspersions on the dead.
Attending a crowded event, whether indoors or out, always comes with implicit dangers.
Maintaining vigilance, also known as “situational awareness” is essential but often dulled by alcohol, etc.
The bottom line is always, if it doesn’t look or feel right, move on and quickly.