Six are dead and 120 injured from a stampede during a rap concert at a packed nightclub in Italy, local media reports. Witnesses say the panic was caused by pepper spray.
The incident took place around 1am local time at the popular Lanterna Azzura club in the town of Corinaldo in the eastern Ancona Province. Around 1,000 people showed up to see Sfera Ebbasta, one of the nation’s most famous young hip hop artists.
The cause of the stampede was not immediately clear, but witnesses report that it started after pepper spray was fired inside the crowded club. The resulting mass panic led people to trample each other while trying to escape the building.
“We were dancing while waiting for the show, when we felt a peppery smell. We ran for the one of the emergency [exits] but it was blocked. The club bouncers told us to come back,” a 16-year-old concertgoer told Repubblica.
Several other people who were injured also said they noticed an acrid smell before the panic.
According to local media, the tragedy claimed at least six lives, including a mother who was accompanying her daughter to the event. The other victims are teenagers – three girls and two boys. More than 120 people were injured, at least 10 of whom were hospitalized in serious condition.
A similar incident occurred in Piazza San Carlo in Turin in 2017, when pepper spray was fired in a robbery attempt at a crowded screening of a soccer match, leaving 1,500 people injured and one dead as the panicked crowd struggled to escape.
More to follow…