Belgium’s Pukkelpop Festival Has Been Canceled Due to Casualties
In the wake of three stages being toppled due to winds at the Pukkelpop Festival in Belgium, organizers have wisely elected to cancel the rest of the fest. With the death toll now standing at 5, with another 140 people injured, the show is not going on, rightfully so.
The New York Times reports that a statement has been released by both the mayor of Hasselt, the city in which Pukkelpop was taking place, as well as the festival organizer. "This started out as a huge festival with happy people partying and ended up as our biggest nightmare," Hilde Claes, the mayor of Hasselt, and the festival organizer, Chokri Mahassine, said in a statement released Friday morning. "We want to emphasize that what happened here was exceptional and unforeseeable."
The Associated Press also reported that local meteorologists had not predicted such a severe storm, with attendees commenting that the oncoming storm looked like something from a movie and compared it to being in "the eye of a cyclone."
The festival is held 50 miles east of Brussels and is one of the biggest festivals for rock music in Europe held during the summer. The fest features eight stages and was expecting 60,000 attendees each day. The lineup was eclectic, featuring Eminem, FooFighters and 30 Seconds to Mars. It's unfortunate that an unforeseen blast from Mother Nature shut the whole thing down and caused loss of life and bodily harm to other victims.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims.