Authorities are investigating the condition that left eight people dead and many more injured Friday night when rapper Travis Scott’s Astroworld music festival in Houston dissolved into chaos — including a huge crowd surge.
The bedlam erupted at about 9:15 p.m., Houston Fire Chief Samuel Peña said, when the massive crowd “began to compress” at the front of the stage.
“People started to fall out, become unconscious and it created additional panic,” Peña said, according to the New York Post.
Eleven of those hospitalized were in cardiac arrest. About 300 were treated at a field hospital at the scene.
The age of one of those killed was unknown. Of the others, one was 14, one was 16, two were 21, two were 23, and on was 27, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said Saturday, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
At least 25 people were hospitalized Friday night, and 13 remained in the hospital Saturday, he said. Five of those hospitalized were under 18.
“There are a lot of unanswered questions,” Turner according to the newspaper. “Over the next several days, several weeks, could be even longer, we’ll take an in-depth look at everything that took place, why it took place, what steps we can do moving forward to mitigate an incident of this kind from taking place.”
ppl were literally screaming bloody murder asking for help right there. #AstroWorld #ASTROFEST rip to all those who lost their life last night, it’s shouldn’t have turned out that way. pic.twitter.com/Qs3WvzmG4O
— tré⁶𓅓 (@tre5pix) November 6, 2021
“We do know that there were several cases of cardiac arrest. What was the cause of that?” he said.
“I don’t even want to go to drug overdoses,” he said. “We are looking at all potential causes of this incident or what caused the cardiac arrest. We’re not taking anything off the table.”
Chief Troy Finner of the Houston Police Department said it’s unknown why the crowd estimated at 50,000 surged toward the stage when it did, according to the Times.
“I’m sending investigators to the hospitals because we just don’t know,” he said, according to the Times. “We’re going to do an investigation and find out, because it’s not fair to producers, to anybody else involved, until we determine what happened, what caused the surge.”
— Chaudhary Parvez (@ChaudharyParvez) November 6, 2021
“It happened all at once,” said Larry Satterwhite, executive assistant chief of the Houston police, according to the Times. Satterwhite noted that several people fell to the ground and began having medical episodes.
“Once (Scott) started, all hell broke loose,” concert-goer Alexis Guavin, 23, said, according to the network. “All of what is to be 50,000 people ran to the front, compressing everyone together with the little air available.”
Guavin said there were “mosh pits in every single direction.”
— Eric Daniels (@azdaniels) November 6, 2021
Music fans said the crowd pressure was intense..
“The crowd was squishing me so much that I felt like I couldn’t breathe,” Emily Munguia, 22, told CNN. “I started screaming for help … I felt so scared, like I was going to die.”
“The amount of people I saw get hurt, passed out, bleeding, crying is crazy,” Munguia said.
“Everything started to happen” when Scott took the stage, fan Anita Amper, 22, told CNN.
“People just went berserk. I realized that people were dying,” she said.