Chicago band Smith Westerns' set was interrupted by a violent storm; Jared Leto tweets from festival in Belgium
In another fatal summer concert stage collapse, reports are coming from Belgium and Holland that three people were killed at the Pukkelpop music festival.
A storm blew down the stage during a set by Chicago band rock Smith Westerns at the annual three-day festival, which began Thursday in Hasselt, Belgium — just east of Brussels.
The 60,000-person event was interupted by a storm that uprooted trees on the festival premises, crashing into the stage.
Official numbers vary throughout reports, but the city's mayor said that at least three are reported dead and at least 40 injured.
Jared Leto, frontman for the band 30 Seconds to Mars has been tweeting from the festival, where he was scheduled to play. “FOUR STAGES DOWN – STILL RAINING + THUNDER IF YOU ARE HERE PLEASE BE SAFE,” he tweeted.
“SERIOUS INJURIES AT THE FESTIVAL. MORE BAD WEATHER POSS HEADING THIS WAY. PLEASE TAKE CARE AND CAUTION”
The latest stage collapse comes on the heels of a gust of wind at the Indiana State Fair over the weekend that brought down the stage, killing five front-row fans and causing dozens of injuries. Sugarland was to perform at the concert.
Rick Hoogkamp, who was covering the event for Dutch NOS television, told the Associated Press that the sky got dark, and violent winds as well as hailstones threatened the concertgoers.
"We have for now put the festival on hold until we understand the situation completely, " fesitval organizer Chokri Mahassine told the AP.
Other bands have had their brushes with weather-related concert mishaps. Cheap Trick avoided being crushed July 27 when the stage at the Ottawa Bluesfest collapsed during a storm; a few were injured.
And on Aug. 7, lighting equipment for the Flaming Lips was destroyed by a storm in Tulsa, Okla.
AP has released this video: