In another horrific crowd crush incident, 155 people have died
in South Korea, after attending an unofficial Halloween celebration in Itaewon. Itaewon is a popular district for nightlife in Seoul - specifically when it comes to celebrating Halloween, and this year, with Covid restrictions lifted (for the first time in two years), crowds of tens of thousands of people
who took to the narrow neon-lit alleyways were squished “shoulder-to-shoulder in a street no more than 4 meters (13 feet) wide.”
The lack of crowd control and the sheer amount of time it took for emergency services to get there (and be able to reach people amidst the crowd) contributed to the fatalities, with victims from countries including the United States, China, Iran, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Japan, Australia, Norway, France, Russia, Austria, Vietnam, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
The thing about tragedies like this (and other ones that we’ve unfortunately been witnessing lately) is that they could have been predicted and prevented. Hotels and ticketed events in the neighbourhood had been booked out in advance, huge crowds were expected, and the South Korean authorities even said: “they had no guidelines
to handle the huge crowds that gathered for Halloween festivities in Seoul.”
My heart really does go out to everyone affected by this - a truly devastating accident.