Deadly Crowd Crush in Seoul


Ben Allen, Reporter

On October 29, 2022, a deadly crowd crush occurred during a massive Halloween event in Seoul, South Korea. This crush quickly became one of the largest mass-casualty events in South Korean history.

This event took place in the Itaewon District of Seoul. This district is known for its festive nightlife and narrow, angled alleyways with few side streets along the way. Thousands of people were within these small streets getting the holiday spirit started. Imagine thousands of individuals, likely under the influence, partying at an angle. As the night grew deeper, the crowd grew.  People began to get shoved, pushed, and over time, space grew smaller and smaller.

The incredibly small quarters made it difficult for people to breathe and they began to suffocate. They began to fall and were subsequently trampled over. Dozens of calls to local authority were made and when they eventually arrived, it was a massive pool of people. Authorities stated that the space was so crowded they could not even see any of the party goers legs. It made rescuing those who were injured even more difficult.

By the end of the horrific night, over 150 were pronounced dead along with an additional 150 were injured.

Days after the tragedy was held, controversy sparked as numerous people who were at the scene of the events spoke out against the local authorities that arrived on scene. Authorities were described as insufficient, unsafe, and poorly managed. After controversy broke out, South Korea’s Prime Minister spoke out admitting that he and the country itself did a poor job of managing the crowd and would begin taking public safety much more seriously onward.

South Korea also received many condolences from around the globe including the United States President: Joe Biden, China President: Xi Jinping, Canadian Prime Minister: Justin Trudeau, German Chancellor: Olaf Scholz, French President: Emmanuel Macron, and many other nations.

This was a large wake up call to not only South Korea, but many other nations as well that public safety needs to be taken seriously and that even in these holiday festivities, people are not always protected.