With concertgoers still reeling from the tragedy that struck Steve Aoki‘s Halloween show in Spain on Wednesday, a dangerous crowd crush resulting in three deaths, the DJ addressed the incident via a public statement Thursday (November 1), in which he expressed his sympathies to the families of the victims and announced the cancellation of Thursday night’s show in Bilbao, Spain.
“After my performance last night at Thriller Music Park at the Madrid Arena in Spain, I was devastated to hear that three people had died during a crowd rush at one of the exits,” Aoki said in a statement obtained my MTV News. “The safety of my fans has always been my top priority and had I known that there was any distress putting people in jeopardy within the venue I would have ended my show immediately. My show in Bilbao, Spain tonight will be cancelled out of respect for those who lost their lives and those who are injured. I would like to express my deepest condolences and heart felt prayers to the families and loved ones during this difficult time.”
Aoki was the show’s headliner the Madrid Arena, a venue that was reportedly only authorized to admit 10,600 people despite its 12,000 capacity. Spin magazine quoted attendee estimates claiming the crowd had swelled to 20,000 and that an unidentified disturbance in the midst of the swarm of revelers led to an audience stampede. By the time authorities arrived on the scene at 4 a.m., they found five people in distress and two victims unconscious and in cardiac arrest. Madrid’s El País newspaper reported that the two young women were declared dead after 30 minutes of attempted resuscitation and that their injuries were due to “trauma by crushing, possibly having suffered a fall and being trampled.” The third victim died shortly after arriving at a local hospital.
Police are still investigating the exact cause of the disaster and the situation surrounding the panic that ensued.