Saturday, December 10, 2022

S. Korea in shock after 153 die in Halloween crowd surge

Concerned relatives raced to hospitals in search of their loved ones Sunday as South Korea mourned the deaths of more than 150 people, mostly in their 20s and 30s, who got trapped and crushed after a huge Halloween party crowd surged into a narrow alley in a nightlife district in Seoul.
Witnesses said the crowd surge Saturday night in the Itaewon area caused “a hell-like” chaos as people fell on each other “like dominoes.” Some people were bleeding from their noses and mouths while being given CPR, witnesses said, while others clad in Halloween costumes continued to sing and dance nearby, possibly without knowing the severity of the situation.
“I still can’t believe what has happened. It was like a hell,” said Kim Mi Sung, an official at a nonprofit organisation that promotes tourism in Itaewon.
Kim said she performed CPR on 10 people who were unconscious and nine of them were declared dead on the spot.
The crowd surge is the country’s worst disaster in years. As of Sunday evening, officials put the death toll at 153 and the number of injured people at 133. The Ministry of the Interior and Safety said the death count could further rise as 37 of the injured people were in serious conditions.
South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol declared a one-week national mourning period on Sunday and ordered flags at government buildings and public offices to fly at half-staff.

SourceAP
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