Houston's Astroworld Fest, a Rap/Hip-Hop festival slated to run the entire weekend of November 4-5, experienced unexpected havoc on its first night.
From ABC 13 Houston:
Eight people died Friday night and hundreds of others were injured during the opening night of a popular weekend music festival at NRG Park, authorities said.
It happened at the third-annual Astroworld Festival, a sold-out concert event featuring multiple acts.
This third annual festival themed, “Open Your Eyes to a Whole New World”, had approximately 50,000 concertgoers in attendance. The shift toward mayhem occurred when festival founder and rapper Travis Scott was joined on stage by Hip-Hop artist Drake, in a surprise appearance.
The worst of the incident began around 9:15 p.m. when the crowd of approximately 50,000 concert-goers began to move toward the front of the stage, according to Houston Fire Chief Samuel Pena.
“The crowd began to compress toward the front of the stage, and people began to panic,” Pena said.
The view from SkyEye overhead Friday night showed the heavy police and fire department activity in the area of the event as organizers ended it early. The organizers, rapper Travis Scott and LiveNation, stopped the show when it was apparent that multiple people were hurt, according to Houston Police Chief Troy Finner.
Houston and Harris County officials are working to piece together how the late Friday night tragedy happened.
While the most deadly moments happened after 9:30 p.m., Pena said more than 300 patients total had been treated at a field hospital since the event began, including people who were hurt during the worst moments. While names and ages of the casualties weren't known, Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo said one of the victims was 10-years-old.
Houston Fire Department and Harris County medics transported 23 people to hospitals, 17 of those patients were taken away during the worst of the ordeal, according to Pena, who also said CPR had to be performed on 11 of the victims. HFD had 55 units in-service for the festival, Pena said.
— ✞ (@MRDIORWRLD) November 6, 2021
The Astroworld Festival began in 2018, as the childhood dream of Houston native, event founder, and rapper Travis Scott. The 350-acre NRG Park where the event is just across the highway from the original Astroworld Theme Park for which the festival is named. The 2021 event was much anticipated, with the initial offering of 100,000 tickets selling out in minutes of the announced November dates.
The last concert event that saw unexpected tragedy and death was the 2017 mass-shooting incident in Las Vegas.