Love Parade Kills 19, injures 350 others, and cancels festival in Germany on July 24, 2010. The electronic dance music festival and parade ended in tragedy when a stampede errupted in a tunnel. Organizers have since permanently cancelled any and all future Love Parades as a result of the stampede. Rainer Schaller, Love Parade organizer stated "The Love Parade has always been a joyful and peaceful party, but in future would always be overshadowed by yesterday's events" in a recent interview following the tragic stampede.
Eyewitnesses report that one million people crowded into the old industrial railway station at 14:00 CEST. Officials reported that 100,000 to 200,000 people used a 20 meter wide, approximately 250 meter long tunnel per hour to enter the Love Parade event. The tunnel quickly became overcrowded and panic ensued. Approximately 100 people broke through safety locks at the west end of the tunnel. Police used loudspeakers to warn new arrivals to exit the closed tunnel and 19 people, including 11 women and 8 men ages 18 to 38 years old, were crushed when a metal staircase plunged to the floor near the tunnel's entrance. Two others were crushed to their deaths against the wall of the tunnel following the collapse of the staircase. Three other people were transported to nearby hospitals and later died from injuries sustained during the stampede.
Germany's State's Attorney and police are have begun an official criminal investigation.
The Love Parade festival and parade began in 1989 in West Burlin, Germany and has been held in Berlin, Rurh, and Bochum with similar events held in locations thoroughout the globe. Similar events have been held in: Sydney, Australia; Vienna, Austria; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Santiago, Chile; Leeds, England; Budapest, Hungary; Tel Aviv, Israel; Mexico City and Acapulco, Mexico; Oslo, Norway; Cape Town, South Africa; Geneva and Zurich, Switzerland; Caracas, Venezuela; San Francisco, California; and Little Rock, Arkansas.