The purpose of the concert is to promote the music and bring people together to enjoy an entertaining evening. But without proper planning and the correct measures being taken to ensure peoples safety and security, these concerts can become death trap for music lovers. As of late, the world has been clouded with terrorist acts. Crowded areas and places where people gather in large numbers have fallen prey to terrorism. Concert goers have been victims of such attacks as well as other tragedies, be it crazy killers or crowd control issues. When these unfortunate events are closely inspected, it usually comes down to poor organizing. Mishaps happen due to miscalculations concerning the crowd, security, and some outright negligence. With so many people gathered together, there’s bound to be some issues and the organizers need keep that in mind to avoid casualties. Here are some of the most horrific concert tragedies that could have been prevented if proper measures had been taken.
15. Stampede at Mawazine Festival
The Mawazine festival that takes place in Northern Africa was the largest music festival and concert in the region. In 2009, after Moroccan pop star Abdelaziz Stati’s concert, the horrific incident occurred. As the crowd was heading towards the exit, panic spread and resulted in the knockdown of a wire fence. This spread terror among the people which set off a stampede having a devastating outcome. And you would think that the police would have helped in this situation, but in fact, they exacerbated the problem by blocking most of the exits forcing the crowd towards a small spaced entrance. The overall death toll of the incident was 11 people including 2 children. This was considered to be the worst case of poor organizing.
14. Overcrowding at Roskilde Festival
Overcrowding is common in concerts but one can never know when it can lead to devastating tragedy. The Roskilde music festival that took place in Denmark in year 2000 had gone through a similar tragedy that led to several casualties. The concert was oversold and people overcrowded the outside area even before the gates opened. Everything went downhill when the people started pushing each other due to impatience and as soon as the concert started the crowd flooded towards the stage. As a result of this, some people were trampled under the feet of the crowd and the clearance team after pushing the crowd back recovered 9 bodies from the scene. The Glastonbury Festival 2001 was postponed for the fear of overcrowding.
13. Railing Collapse at Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa Concert
A concert was held in 2016 at the Camden BB&T Pavilion in New Jersey. Snoop Dog and Wiz Khalifa were set to perform at the concert attracting a large crowd. As the concert was in full swing, the singers were reportedly gesturing the crowd to come forward towards the stage and the partition that separated the lawn from the stage fell. This caused the fans to fall in front of the stage and some of the fans fell 10 feet down and landed on concrete resulting in many injuries. There were reportedly 42 injured who were rushed to the hospital. But the people did not take it likely and decided to sue the artists. Artists were blamed for provoking the crowd to usher forward.
12. Multiple Assaults at Woodstock ’99
What happens when the very people standing for ‘peace’ don’t know the meaning of it? The unfortunate event occurred at the Woodstock festival during one of the many concerts. Ironically, the concert was held to commemorate the Woodstock festival in 1969 which represented ‘three days of peace and music’. Going against the beliefs of the festival, the some attendees wrecked and broke stuff and many other attendees were sexually assaulted. The festival was overcrowded with many entries using fake passes. There was constant hollering of curse words on women who stepped on stage. There were many reports of gang rape by eye-witnesses that saw the whole thing, but the police were only able to arrest 44 suspects because only a few assault were reported.
11. Pantera Guitarist Shot Dead
We can all agree that some fans tend to go a little overboard in their fandom. The Pantera guitarist, Dimebag Darell, also had a fan that knew no limits to his love for metal; in his crazed state, he shot down the guitarist along with three other victims. This tragedy occurred in December 1997 at Alrosa Villa club in Columbus, Ohio. Darell was going to perform with his new band ‘Damageplan’ at the place where the fan shot him. The motive as stated by the shooter was that the breakup of the band Panthera upset him; he blamed Darell for it. At first, attendees thought it was a gimmick planned by the guitarist. But when Dimebag’s shriek was heard, the real chaos started. The police killed the shooter immediately after the uproar over the incident.
10. Storm at Indiana State Fair
In the 2011 Indiana state fair, a thunderstorm caused unrecoverable damage. The storm brought along with it heavy rain, dirt, and a gush of strong wind which disrupted the fair. As instructions for evacuation were being given from the stage, a strong gust of wind blew in and caused the stage to collapse. The stage fell towards the crowd. All the metal equipment, lighting, and electronics fell causing injury to the crowd. Sugarland was about to go on just before the incident happened. Sugarland wanted to go on with the show, despite knowing about the weather forecast. The death toll for the incident was seven, with 58 people injured. Careful inspection of the accident concluded that the stage was set up safely and the incident occurred due to extreme weather.
9. Stampede at Love Parade
A German music festival took place in the year 2010; this festival was like no other Germany had seen before. The festival attracted a crowd of about 1.4 million. The way to get to the festival grounds included passing through tunnels and underground passageways. Nothing good ever comes out of putting so many people in small enclosed areas. It was the first time that the Love Parade was arranged indoors in Duisburg. As the people entered the tunnels, panic began to spread. This panic caused a stampede that crushed and suffocated several people as the situation got out of hand. The aftermath of the incident included 21 deaths and 500 injuries. This horrific incident would be the end of the Love Parade. Organizers announced that this festival would be cancelled permanently.
8. Fire at a Nightclub in Bangkok
On New Year’s Eve of 2009, Bangkok had to make peace with a tragic incident. A night club in Bangkok was holding a concert to celebrate the New Year when the fire suddenly swallowed up the whole club killing and burning many victims. The fire killed 66 people and injured 222 who ended up in hospital with severe burns. Most of the deaths were caused by smoke inhalation, skin burns and stampeding crowds that started after the fire broke out. No clear cause of the fire was found, but there were reportedly fireworks in the building and electrical mishaps. Videos also show that only ordinary sparklers were used in-house. The irony of the incident was that the people had assembled to listen to a band named ‘Burn’.
7. Terrorist Attack in Paris
The attack took place in November 2015 during a show by Eagles of Death Metal. During the concert, three Jihadists with rifles entered the Bataclan Theatre in Paris. During the 20 minutes that they were inside they started firing at the ‘infidels’. The shooting itself is believed to have caused 89 deaths. However, the gunmen were also wearing suicide vests and blew themselves up along with other victims as soon as they had the chance. Believed to be the deadliest shooting at a concert, the attack seemed to been a catalyst for a series of attacks that night resulting in the deaths of 130 people in Paris.
6. The Fire at Station Nightclub
In 2003 a concert was held at the Station nightclub in Rhode Island where the band ‘Great white’ always came to perform. Some flammable material was used for fire special effects but this caused a fire in the club. In a futile effort, people tried to put out the fire using cups. Since most of the exits were blocked, it was difficult for people to escape and the material used for insulation inside the club turned out to be flammable which caused the fire to grow. The incident resulted in the death of 100 people and 230 injured. The band were able to successfully escaped the club without experiencing any harm.
5. The Fire at Cocoanut Grove Nightclub
In 1942 at the Cocoanut Grove nightclub in Boston, a concert was underway when a fire spread and destroyed everything. Considered as the deadliest fire that happened in a concert, the casualties of the incident included 492 people. It is believed that during the concert the fire spread throughout the nightclub and many people were caught up in it. Some victims burned to death, while others were trampled and crushed when the panic from the fire spread. Other victims died of smoke inhalation sitting at their tables, not realizing there was a fire; there bodies were found burned thereafter.
4. The Rushing Incident at the Who’s Concert
In 1979 The Who was playing in Cincinnati but the concert wasn’t all fun, as a tragic incident took place. The concert attracted many fans and the doors of the concert hall were jammed packed by the crowd before the concert began. As the concert was on a ‘First come, better view’ basis, people were anxiously waiting for the doors to open in order to rush for better seats. And due to a misunderstanding, the crowd went gushing towards few of the open entrances causing a stampede. This incident caused the death of 11 people who were trampled under the feet of the massive crowd, and another eight people were injured.
3. Riots at Guns N’ Roses and Metallica Concert
In 1992, Guns N’ Roses and Metallica were set to perform a double header concert in Montreal . The lead singer of Metallica was being injured by faulty stage props and the concert had to be cut short, causing unrest in the crowd. The situation worsened because Guns ‘N Roses made the crowd wait for over two hours before going on, and then only played about nine songs before bailing themselves because of sound problems and Axl having a sore throat. The loud music mixed with the fact that Guns N’ Roses cut their show down led the fans to riot after the concert. A reportedly, $400000 of damage was caused to the Olympic Stadium. The situation got so out of hand that the police had to use tear gas and batons to stop the rioters.
2. The Unsettling Security Condition at Altamont Free Concert
A free concert took place in 1969 at the Altamont Festival in California. The low budget of the concert led to an economic decision being made regarding the security at the concert. The Hell’s Angels were hired to take care of security. There guards weren’t even close to being enough for the crowd of 300000 spectators. The situation became so bad that the performer were worried about their safety and left midway through the show, which caused an uproar among the people. The security team’s poor attempt at controlling the situation resulted in the accidental death of four people. And as bizarre as it sounds, there were a reported four live births at the concert.
1. Terrorist Attack at Ariana Grande Concert
On the 22nd of March 2017, the Ariana Grande in London was nearing the end when an explosion erupted. This explosion was claimed by ISIS in their telegram message, but American intelligence said this could not be confirmed. It was set off by a suicide bomber who was identified as 22-year- old Salman Abadihas. The tragic incident counted 22 dead, which included some children, and 59 injured. The investigation is still ongoing as they search for people who were working with the suicide bomber, as well as continue to investigate ISIS links to the incident. The police have arrested one suspect so far and are looking for others.