Houston, TX – Eight concertgoers were killed, thirteen remain hospitalized, and more than 300 people were treated for injuries at the field hospital on site at Travis Scott’s Astroworld Festival in Houston on Friday night.
Two of the audience members who died on Nov. 5 were only 14 and 16 years old.
Witnesses told CNN that it was obvious things were out of control with the crowd at the rapper’s music festival when security was unable to control the crowd at the gate early in the day.
Videos showed that hundreds of people busted through the check point and security personnel appeared powerless to stop them.
People were injured in that initial melee but the concert wasn’t cancelled despite the fact that hundreds of screaming fans had just burst through the gate and run past police officers mounted on horseback who could do nothing but watch the chaos from above.
— XXL Magazine (@XXL) November 5, 2021
Multiple lawsuits have already been filed against Scott and Drake, who performed with Scott at Astroworld, FOX News reported.
All of the plaintiffs have alleged that Scott continued performing even as emergency vehicles were trying to break through the crowd to make rescues.
Allegations have been made that when fans complained online beforehand that the festival was sold out, Scott tweeted that they would “still be sneaking the wild ones in,” FOX News reported.
Witnesses described a chaotic scene that ratcheted up dramatically at the already packed outdoor concert venue when a 30-minute countdown clock was posted on the stage where Scott was about to perform, CNN reported.
As the crowd pressed forward to be nearer to the stage, the people up front slowly got crushed.
“He started a countdown about 30 minutes before he performed — he started a timer on the big screen,” Madeline Eskins, an ICU nurse who was in the crowd, told CNN.
“And all of a sudden, people compressed up against each other and were pushing forward and backward. As the timer got closer to coming down to zero, it just — it got worse and worse,” Eskins described.
She said she felt pressure from all directions and started having trouble breathing, CNN reported.
“It happens, people rush the stage, no big deal,” Eskins said. “It’s uncomfortable, some get hurt, but this was way overcrowded. I’ve never seen anything like it. I felt like I was going to die.”
She said the rescue scene was a nightmare and she saw multiple people suffering cardiac arrest but paramedics only had one automated external defibrillator (AED) and one Ambu bag, CNN reported.
“There was so little resources. I mean the medics that were there to help, a lot of them hadn’t been properly trained,” Eskins said. “That’s not to take away from what they were doing — they were still trying their best. They weren’t given the proper resources.”
Witnesses reported that people in the front of the crowd got crushed and some lost consciousness as the show started and said Scott stopped performing briefly for a couple of minutes but then continued as things just got worse in the audience, CNN reported.
“The crowd became tighter and tighter, and at that point it was hard to breathe. When Travis came out performing his first song, I witnessed people passing out next to me,” 20-year-old T.K. Tellez told CNN.
“We were all screaming for help, and no one helped or heard us,” Tellez recalled. “It was horrifying. People were screaming for their lives, and they couldn’t get out. Nobody could move a muscle.”
Videos showed some concertgoers actually made their way up to the stage and asked cameramen and light crew for help but they can be seen telling the panicked people to go away.
“Stop the show! Stop the show! Stop the show!” a girl yelled loud enough for the audio to be captured in a cell phone video of the altercation.
“There is somebody dead,” she yelled at the nonplussed crew member who kept gesturing for her to get down and out of the way.
“There is somebody dead.”
“Stop the show. Stop the show. Stop the show.”
— David Leavitt (@David_Leavitt) November 6, 2021
Witnesses described how the concert continued as people were being crushed to death, CNN reported.
“Travis Scott would have a short time in between songs, and we would scream our vocal chords out so someone could hear us but nobody did,” Tellez explained “This year’s festival will be stuck with me forever. I’ve never seen someone die in front of my eyes. It was horrific.”
All of the lawsuits alleged that Scott continued performing even though they knew there were lives in danger in the crowd, FOX News reported.
Police said that show was stopped about 40 minutes after they first began receiving calls about concertgoers in distress, KTRK reported.
Scott posted a video to his Instagram on Saturday night that said he had no idea there was a problem at Astroworld.
“I just want to send out prayers to the ones that was lost last night,” Scott said in the video. “We’re actually working right now to identify the families so we can help assist them through this tough time.”
“My fans… My fans, like, really mean the world to me and I always just really want to leave them with a positive experience and any time I can make out anything that’s going on, I stop the show and help them get the help they need, you know? I could just never imagine the severity of the situation,” the rapper said.
— TRAVIS SCOTT (@trvisXX) November 6, 2021
JUST IN: Travis Scott shares video addressing the tragedy at Astroworld Fest pic.twitter.com/MSjVpJH3fK
— XXL Magazine (@XXL) November 7, 2021
But his words ring hollow to many because of his track record with encouraging chaos at his previous shows, FOX News reported.
At least three people were injured at the Astroworld festival in 2019 after there was a stampede in the crowd.
Scott was arrested in 2017 after he invited fans to skip security and rush the stage at a concert in Arkansas, FOX News reported.
He also pleaded guilty to doing the same thing in Chicago at Lollapalooza in 2015.