'Violent' Winds Lead to Death, Injuries at Music Fest

One person killed, 'dozens' injured after part of stage collapses at Spain's Medusa Fest in Cullera
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 13, 2022 8:30 AM CDT

The plan for Friday evening at Spain's Medusa Festival, the first night of the six-day event, involved multiple DJs entertaining the crowds across five stages all night long. But that's not how things went down, after high winds caused a portion of the main stage to collapse, killing one and injuring many of those in attendance. The exact number of those hurt is still unclear: ABC News reports more than 20, while Reuters says "dozens." The latter outlet says three people suffered "serious trauma injuries," while another 14 had minor injuries, according to regional emergency services.

Health authorities later said that 40 people "were attended to." The person who was killed has been reported by local media to be a 28-year-old man. Event organizers say an "unexpected and violent gale" swept through the festival site in Cullera, about 40 minutes south of Valencia, at around 4am Saturday, per ABC. Once organizers saw the conditions were getting worse, they evacuated the area around the stage. "Unfortunately, the devastating meteorological phenomenon caused some structures to cause unexpected events," they said.

Local media shows on-site tents being pummeled by the wind, as well as fences toppled over the next day. "We are in a state of shock because we were [100 feet] away [from the stage]," one attendee who was there with his brother tells national broadcaster TVE, via Reuters. "It could have been me, it could have been anyone." "It is a very painful moment," organizers said in a statement, calling what had happened "difficult and heartbreaking ... a moment no one should ever know." The festival has been suspended for now. (More Spain stories.)

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