At least eight people are dead and dozens more are injured after a large crowd began pushing toward the front of the stage at the Astroworld music festival in Houston on Friday night.
The New York Times reports a crowd of roughly 50,000 was in attendance for the opening of the two-day event. A crowd surge began during a concert by rapper Travis Scott resulting in pushing, panic, and mayhem.
“It was like hell,” said concert-goer Nick Johnson,17. “Everybody was just in the back, trying to push to the front.”
However, it does not appear the onset of the crowd rush was entirely unexpected. Witnesses say the event was hectic from the beginning with video footage allegedly showing a crowd toppling event fencing earlier in the day to rush admissions and the event entrance. The crowd was driven back by police on horseback.
Additional video captured concert-goers pleading for help as the concert was in full swing and the crowd began to rush the stage.
“There was a lot of mob mentality going on, people willing to do whatever to be in line for merch, food, shows, you name it,” said attendee Neema Djavadzadeh. “A lot of fights broke out throughout the day.”
Eventually, the company that organized the festival, Live Nation, agreed to stop Scott’s performance early in the interest of public safety.
By that time, 23 people were hospitalized, 11 were in cardiac arrest, and over 300 people were treated at a “field hospital” on site. At least eight people have died from their injuries, and children are reported to be among the hospitalized.
Gov. Gregg Abbott addressed the event Saturday, saying “What happened at Astroworld Festival last night was tragic, and our hearts are with those who lost their lives and those who were injured in the terrifying crowd surge.”
In the wake of the chaos, officials set up a “reunification center” at a hotel across the street from the music venue with the hopes of helping families find loved ones who were at the event.
As coverage of the event began to take over social media, those in attendance recounted people gasping for air and calls for help left unheeded. Video from one account shows a person climbing on a riser and calling for the performance to stop, screaming that people were dying. He was met with insults.
Investigators are still reviewing videos of the event, and Live Nation is cooperating with authorities.
Updates are expected to follow as more information is gathered.
Thomas J. Henry announced Saturday that his firm will be offering immediate consultations for injury and death cases related to the Astroworld festival. Consultations will occur at no cost to those involved, and victims and families of those injured or killed at the event are urged to contact the firm immediately.
Thomas J. Henry Law is one of the nation’s leading personal injury firms. Since 1993, the firm has fought to secure justice and compensation for individuals who have lost loved ones due to the negligence of others and to prevent similar instances of wrongful death from occurring again. Over that time, Thomas J. Henry and his firm have been the recipients of numerous awards and recognitions.
In 2021, Thomas J. Henry Law was named “Law Firm of the Year” by the American Institute of Legal Professionals.
In 2020, the firm was named one of the Best Places to Work by Glassdoor for the second consecutive year. It was the only law firm to secure the accolade. Firm founder Thomas J. Henry was named one of SA Scene Magazine’s Best San Antonio Lawyers. Thomas J. Henry was also recognized in Texas Lawyer’s (an ALM Company) Southwest Top Verdicts and Settlements of 2020 for securing the #1 Gross Negligence Verdict for the year.
In 2019, Thomas J. Henry Law was recognized as one of the nation’s Premier Law Firms by Newsweek.com. That same year, Bloomberg Businessweek published a feature on Thomas J. Henry, highlighting his firm’s “clear commitment to client satisfaction.” Thomas J. Henry was also named the Best Attorney of San Antonio by the SA Current.
In 2018, Thomas J. Henry was named a Distinguished Lawyer by Lawyers of Distinction and was also recognized as one of the Best Personal Injury Attorneys in the nation by Newsweek.com. In 2017, Thomas J. Henry achieved one of the 10 largest verdicts recorded in Texas for the year (awarded to Thomas J. Henry by Texas Lawyer, an ALM company) as well as the #1 Texas Car Accident, Bus Accident, and Negligent Supervision Verdicts for the year (awarded to Thomas J. Henry by TopVerdict.com).
Other recent results include:
In 2016, Forbes Magazine named Thomas J. Henry a “Texas Leader in Law,” noting his ability to secure large financial awards, a positive reputation among professional peers, and a dedication to philanthropy at the local, national, and global levels.
Thomas J. Henry is also a lifetime member of both the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum and of Rue Ratings’ “Best Attorneys of America.”
Outside of the courtroom, the firm is known for its many philanthropic endeavors and generous contributions to local and global communities.
The firm has an active philanthropy program that supports causes related to poverty, veterans, national disaster relief, education, animals, and the arts.