Eight people were killed and hundreds were injured at Travis Scott’s Astroworld Festival in Houston, Texas on Friday night when the crowd surged forward, leaving people toward the front with nowhere to escape. About 50,000 people attended the sold-out Live Nation event, which was held at NRG Park.
It happened just after 9 p.m. while Travis Scott was performing. According to Houston Fire Chief Sam Peña, the crowd started to move toward the stage, pressing into the audience members at the front and crushing them. Some people fell and lost consciousness. Panic ensued.
Video from the event shows Scott pausing during his performance when he spots an ambulance making its way through the crowd.
23 Hospitalized, Including a 10-Year-Old
23 people were taken to the hospital, and 8 of them died. One audience member who was hospitalized is just 9 years old. The child is currently in critical condition. Over 300 people were treated at a field hospital nearby.
This isn’t the first crowd surge at the Astroworld Festival. Just hours earlier, one person was injured as people crowded a VIP entrance to the event. In 2019, 3 concert-goers were trampled and injured when people rushed to enter.
Local news showed a video of the crowd rushing the entrances earlier in the day:
Why Did the Astroworld Crowd Surge Happen?
When you go to a concert, sporting event, or other place where you’re in a large crowd, the last thing you should worry about is whether you’ll be trampled or crushed to death. It’s up to event planners and security to maintain and manage crowds before situations like this happen, even in general admission or festival seating areas. Once they start, they’re nearly impossible to stop.
That’s what happened in 1989 at a soccer match at Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield, England. 97 people died, crushed or trampled when the center pens were overcrowded. Hundreds of people were pressed up against the fences by the sheer weight of the crowd behind them.
The unfortunate truth is that concert organizers and venues never seem to learn. When people are too closely packed together, even a small movement will be felt at a greater magnitude. This ripple effect can cause people to fall to the ground. Some are unable to move at all and die standing up. Others are trampled. Those who survive are left with traumatizing memories of a situation where something fun turned into an outright disaster where they were completely helpless to stop themselves and their loved ones from being crushed.
Crowd surges happen when too many people are in one place. They happen when crowds are not properly controlled and organized.
The truth of the matter is that they should not happen at all.
Coming Together to Help Astroworld Victims & Their Families
An investigation into the deadly Astroworld crowd surge has already begun, and the second night of the concert has been canceled. Texas Governor Greg Abbott said that the Texas Department of Public Safety will make resources available to help with the investigation: why it happened in the first place and what prevented people from being able to escape.
As Houston natives, our hearts go out to those who lost loved ones and who were injured in this terrifying ordeal. Our concert injury attorneys will continue to follow the details of this incident and the investigation as it develops.