Houston officials hold news conference after 8 killed at Astroworld Festival

The event, held at NRG Park Arena in Houston, is canceled for Saturday

Houston officials hold news conference after 8 killed at Astroworld Festival (KSAT)

HOUSTON – Houston Police and Fire Departments are holding a news conference Saturday afternoon after eight people died during a crowd surge at rapper Travis Scott’s Astroworld Festival.

In a statement released by Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, the city is expected to detail how the event got out of control.

“What happened at Astroworld Festival was a tragedy. An estimated 50,000 people attended the event Friday night, expecting to enjoy a music concert with friends and return home safely. I extend my condolences to the families of the eight people who died and the approximately 17 people who were injured at the event. Many of them suffered cardiac arrest. Immediately following the tragedy, the city began to assist with resources and necessary support. A reunification center is setup at 8686 Kirby Dr. for families to reconnect with loved ones who attend the event. Families searching for loved ones may also call 3-1-1.

“This was a major event that happened in the city and on Harris County property. Today, law enforcement will speak with concert promoters and witnesses and review videos available from the event and inside the festival venue. I have called for a detailed briefing from all stakeholders, including Live Nation, Harris County, NRG Park, Police, Fire, Office of Emergency Management, and other agencies, explaining how the event got out of control leading to the deaths and injuries of several attendees.”

The news conference will begin around 3 p.m.

At last check, police are still working to reunite concertgoers with their friends and family after the deadly incident. The Wyndam Hotel, located at 8686 Kirby Drive, is serving as a reunification center for those who attended the festival.

Authorities say over 50,000 people attended the festival, which was held outside of the NRG Park stadium, and it is unclear what caused the crowd surge.

“The crowd began to compress towards the front of the stage, and that caused some panic, and it started causing some injuries,” Houston Fire Chief Samuel Peña said in a news conference. “People began to fall out, become unconscious, and it created additional panic.”

Peña said 17 people were taken to hospitals and 11 of those people were in cardiac arrest. Many others were injured as well.

You can watch the news conference around 3 p.m. in the video player above.


About the Author:

Emily Martin is a digital producer trainee at KSAT. She earned a journalism degree from Texas State University, where she was news director at KTSW, the campus radio station. She has also interned at KXAN and KUT in Austin.