'Stinging substance' panic leads to stampede in Italy club, 6 dead

Updated: Dec 09, 2018, 11:06 IST | Agencies | Rome

"The cause may have been the dispersal of a stinging substance, the young people fled and trampled over each other. Sadly, six people died and dozens are injured," the fire service said in a statement on Twitter

Media reports said the suspected use of a pepper spray-like substance sparked chaos at the venue
Media reports said the suspected use of a pepper spray-like substance sparked chaos at the venue

At least six people died and dozens were injured in a stampede when panic broke out during a rap concert at an Italian nightclub early Saturday. Media reports said the suspected use of a pepper spray-like substance sparked chaos at the venue in the town of Corinaldo, near Ancona in central Italy.

"The cause may have been the dispersal of a stinging substance, the young people fled and trampled over each other. Sadly, six people died and dozens are injured," the fire service said in a statement on Twitter.

The victims include five people under the age of 18 — three girls and two boys — and an adult woman who accompanied her daughter to the concert. Local fire chief Dino Poggiali said that 14 of the injured were in a critical condition, and 40 less serious. As the crowd panicked, people ran for the three emergency exits, one of which led to a small bridge and the car park, according to a preliminary investigation.

The force of the fleeing crowd made a railing collapse and dozens of people fell, crushing those below to death. 'You can't die like that' A pile of abandoned shoes testified to the chaos of the stampede, with survivors and the bereaved weeping outside the nightclub as emergency vehicles tended to the injured, a local newspaper reported. "It can't be! You can't die like that. Wake up Mattia, I beg you," one unnamed woman cried as she knelt by her son's body, the paper said.

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