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Home Latest News Seoul crush leaves South Korea reeling ,as death toll rises to 154

Seoul crush leaves South Korea reeling ,as death toll rises to 154


South Korean authorities have been on Sunday investigating the crowd surge that killed at least 154 partygoers in Seoul, because the rattled nation makes an attempt to come back to phrases with considered one of its worst-ever disasters.

The nation has begun a week-long interval of mourning whereas officers try to know how the devastating crush occurred.

A minimum of 26 overseas nationals, together with two US residents, are among the many useless. Greater than a dozen embassies across the globe have confirmed victims from their nation.

What brought about Saturday’s surge is unclear, however witnesses say partygoers have been packed tightly into slender streets within the capital’s nightlife district of Itaewon, as folks loved the primary Halloween weekend since Covid-19 restrictions have been lifted.

Almost the entire victims – at the very least 150 – have been recognized; police informed CNN. The toll included 56 males and 97 ladies, South Korea’s Inside and Security Ministry reported.

As of 5 p.m. native time Sunday (4 a.m. ET), the variety of folks injured had risen to 133, of whom 37 have been severely injured, the ministry stated.

Rescue officials and police gather in the district of Itaewon following the crush.

“There have been rows and rows of individuals with tarps overlaying them on the street,” Emily Farmer, a 27-year-old English trainer in Seoul who was passing through Itaewon, informed CNN.

Farmer and her buddies have been “overwhelmed” by the crowds on the road and determined to enter a bar. Shortly after, rumors began spreading that someone had died and patrons weren’t allowed to depart. Farmer stated she obtained an emergency message from the federal government alerting them to “a harmful state of affairs within the space,” and later was allowed to depart the bar, when she found the size of the tragedy.

“It was horrible,” she stated. “Not everybody died immediately.” Teams of individuals have been crying, she added. Many victims have been receiving CPR and had their costumes taken off to permit medics on the scene to resuscitate them. “They have been nonetheless pulling folks (out) as a result of it was so crowded,” she added.

One other eyewitness, Sung Sehyun, informed CNN that the road house was like a “jammed subway” on Saturday night, with Halloween partygoers packed so tightly that it was troublesome to maneuver round.

Nationals from dozens of countries were among the dead.

Suah Cho added that folks had began to push and shove, and there was loads of screaming. She finally managed to take a detour and fled to security however had seen folks climbing buildings to outlive. She added that the costumes folks have been carrying added to the confusion; “there was additionally a police officer screaming however we couldn’t actually inform (if it) was an actual police officer as a result of so many individuals have been carrying costumes.”

Witnesses informed CNN there was little or no – if any – crowd management earlier than the mass of individuals turned lethal.

Movies and pictures posted to social media present folks crammed collectively, standing shoulder to shoulder within the slender avenue.

Flowers have been laid at the scene of the disaster.

Crowds are usually not uncommon for that space, or for Seoul residents, who’re used to jam-packed subways and streets in a metropolis of virtually 10 million.

After the primary emergency calls got here in round 10:24 p.m., authorities rushed to the scene – however the sheer quantity of individuals made it troublesome to succeed in those that wanted assist. Video posted to social media confirmed folks performing compressions on different partygoers mendacity on the bottom as they waited for medical help.

Quite a few international locations, together with the US, China, Iran, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Japan, Australia, Norway and France, have confirmed that their nationals have been among the many victims.

A College of Kentucky nursing pupil is among the many useless, in keeping with a press release from college president Eli Capilouto. Anne Gieske, a junior from Northern Kentucky, was finding out overseas in Seoul this semester, Capilouto stated.

Three South Korean navy personnel have been additionally amongst these killed, a Korean protection ministry official informed CNN.

The South Korean authorities has set a nationwide mourning interval beginning till the tip of November 5, Prime Minister Han Duck-soo stated in a briefing.

Through the mourning interval, all public establishments and diplomatic workplaces will fly flags at half workers, Han stated, including that each one non-urgent occasions might be postponed.

Civil servants and workers of public establishments will put on ribbons to specific their condolences through the mourning interval, Han stated.

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