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Pukkelpop Storm Disaster – Five Dead, Hundreds Injured

Written by John Ritchie on August 19, 2011

Belgian officials have confirmed that the death toll at the Pukkelpop festival tragedy has risen from three to five and over a hundred people have been injured. As more details and footage emerge online we are only realizing just how horrific this storm was. The destruction and trauma that it caused as it wreaked havoc on festival goers will be stuck in the memory of those involved for life. Strong winds ripped up trees and tore down towers and television screens, tents were blown away and the campsite was flooded.

The Pukkelpop organisers have issued a statement :

Pukkelpop is in deep mourning. We truly sympathise with the families and friends of the victims.

Words are not enough. We have struggled with the decision to continue the festival. Therefore we have decided to cancel Pukkelpop 2011.

What has happened is very exceptional and could not have been predicted. We are deeply moved by all the spontaneous support the festival goers and the organisation have received.

At a news conference festival organisers said that weather forecasters did not predict a storm of that intensity but the the Belgian weather service refused to reveal the speed of the winds, simply stating that the storm was “violent.”

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