‘Stop the show’ they screamed, ‘there are people dying’. But the performance went on for another 40 minutes
It’s been reported that for 37 minutes after Houston officials declared a ‘mass casualty’ at the Astroworld festival event, singer Travis Scott kept performing.
Eight people died and 25 remain in hospital after a crowd surge at the festival in Texas last night.
Now as footage emerges of the harrowing scenes at the event, festival organisers have been criticised for not stopping the show quickly enough, despite the desperate pleas from fans.
The pregnant girlfriend of Scott, Kylie Jenner who attended the event with her three year old, released a statement this evening saying she was ‘devastated’ by the deaths.
“I want to make it clear we weren’t aware of fatalities until the new came out after the show and in no world would have continued filming or performing” she wrote in her Instagram story this evening.
“Travis and I are broken and devastated. My thoughts and prayers are with all who lost their lives, were injured, or affected in any way by yesterday’s events. And also for Travis who I knew cares deeply for his fans and the Houston community” Jenner wrote.
The Kardashian sister was criticised online for leaving up Instagram stories of the crowd which seem to show ambulances trying to get through the crowd.
Two children aged 14 and 16 were among eight people linked amid the crowd surge.
Directly after the tragedy, Scott filmed an segment, rubbing his head, disorientated and describing how much he cared for fans. The singer also came under fire for reportedly ignoring the cries for help as many in the crowd waved and called for the concert to stop.
In one clip circulating on social media platform TikTok, paramedics are seen giving CPR to a fan as Travis Scott does the robot on a raised plinth overlooking the crowd.
This evening those caught up in the surge have been sharing their stories – some even posting from hospital.
One girl named Jay described her experience at the concert as a “nightmare”.
“Last night I almost died. I was in the crowd near the front. Travis just came on stage and the crowd went crazy. I was immediately pushed to the ground. I was flat on the ground and about five other people were on top of me. I was at the very bottom. I couldn’t breath. I was screaming for help ‘Please help me. You all are killing me’ I was being crushed, stepped on continuously for two minutes straight. eventually a random guy saw me struggling and he grabbed me”.
Another concertgoer Seanna Faith described in her own words what happened.
“There was no air. Nowhere to go. The shoving got harder and harder. If someone’s arms had been up, it was no longer a possibility to put them down. So people began to choke as the mass swayed. We tried to scream for help, some collapsed. The music continued.”
I told him people were dying. He told me to get off the platform and continued filming. I screamed over and over again. He wouldn’t even look in the direction
She described how she felt she wouldn’t make it out alive. “I was shoved further to the ground, my face down at the cold hard plastic below us and saw the body of a man. There were people below the ones I could see from above. There was a floor of bodies, of men and women.”
She managed to escape the crush and made her way to a platform to plead with a camera person for help.
“I told him people were dying. He told me to get off the platform and continued filming. I screamed over and over again. He wouldn’t even look in the direction. I told him to get help. No one would listen. I went under the platform and called 911. I told the operator over and over that we needed to stop the concert. We needed light, awareness of the deaths.”
An investigation into the incident is ongoing.