It all happened at the Astroworld Festival in Houston, Texas: a crowd surge during Travis Scott’s performance left at least eight people dead – some of whom were still in high school. Hundreds of others were injured. The horrifying incident shook the community and the entire country, leaving people wondering why it happened in the first place and what could have been done to stop it.
Here’s what our concert injury attorneys know so far about the Astroworld mass casualty event:
- About 50,000 people were at the sold-out Astroworld Festival at NRG Park.
- It happened just after 9 p.m. during Travis Scott’s performance.
- Witnesses say Travis Scott continued to perform “when people were dying.”
- 25 people were hospitalized, and about 300 were treated at an on-site field hospital.
- 8 people died, including a 14-year-old and a 16-year-old.
- The youngest victim in the hospital is just 10 years old and is in critical condition.
Concertgoers Recount Astroworld Disaster: “It Felt Like a Nightmare”
In hearing and reading witness accounts of the Astroworld mass casualty event, it’s easy to see how helpless everyone felt. They were screaming for help but couldn’t be heard over the sounds of the show and other fans. One young woman, who was attending her first music festival, said she lost her balance and fell. But people kept stepping on her until someone finally pulled her to her feet. She said she tried to help others and took turns performing CPR on four other concertgoers with a nurse she found in the crowd.
“It was terrifying, she said of the ordeal. “It felt like it was a nightmare.”
One concertgoer described the incident in an interview. He said when performer Drake came on stage with Travis Scott, the crowd went wild. But the screams were for the show to stop.
In another interview, a young concertgoer talked about how the pressure built. She said she and her boyfriend secured a spot toward the front of the stage at about 6:30 p.m., hours before Travis Scott was set to perform. The crowd got more and more packed as time went on, and things started to get out of hand when a 30-minute countdown started on the big screen. When Travis Scott took the stage, the crowd started surging.
She described feeling “constant pressure on my chest, constant pressure on my back,” and she told her boyfriend that they needed to get out of there. But they couldn’t move. She said she passed out. She was pulled over a fence and passed out again. When she came to, she was sitting up with a water bottle in her lap.
2 Victims Lost in Astroworld Crowd Surge Were Just Teenagers
Travis Scott’s concerts attract a younger crowd, and many of the Astroworld concertgoers were teenagers and young adults in their twenties. According to Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, one of the victims who died in the surge was just 14. Another was only 16. The other victims were in their twenties.
Cause of death is not yet known for the eight people who lost their lives on Friday night, but authorities will push for answers. One victim has not yet been identified.
25 people were taken to local hospitals, with 13 still hospitalized as of Sunday. 5 of the injured are under 18. The 9-year-old who was hospitalized remains in critical condition.
In all, more than 300 people were treated on-site at a “field hospital” set up by emergency personnel.
Security Measures at the Astroworld Festival
With an incident like this, one cannot help but ask whether enough security measures were taken. Were there enough security officers to manage the 50,000-person crowd? Were the festival seating / general admission areas organized and manned properly, and how many people gained access to the concert who didn’t have tickets?
Earlier in the day, people rushed the entrances to the event. Videos show them running through security gates and passing security personnel. These crowd rushes were an early sign of the disaster to come.
According to officials, there were 528 Houston Police Department officers and 755 private security officers at the event, which was organized by Live Nation. 1,283 security personnel may seem like a lot, but with a crowd of 50,000, that’s just 1 officer for every 39 people. When crowds get big enough, security personnel and barriers can easily be overwhelmed.
That’s precisely what happened at the Astroworld Festival.
Finding Answers After the Astroworld Mass Casualty Event
This is not the first time a Travis Scott concert has gotten out of hand. It’s not the first time that the Astroworld Festival has left concertgoers injured. Travis Scott’s concerts are known to have high-energy crowds and mosh pits. In 2018, three people were injured at the Astroworld Festival when they rushed to enter the venue.
At Arnold & Itkin, we are committed to finding answers for the people who were injured and lost loved ones at the Astroworld Festival. Situations like this can be prevented if proper security measures are put in place. Our Astroworld lawsuit attorneys will be looking into what responsibility Travis Scott, NRG Park, Live Nation, and other parties may have in allowing this mass casualty event to occur.
More than anything, our hearts go out to all who were affected and continue to struggle with the aftermath of this horrifying situation.