Crowd crazing

  • 2001 (December 18th) Four die (including 3 children) Aracaju, Brazil. Free Christmas Gift Distribution Creates Crush And Death. Four people died, including three children, when a poorly planned and managed government sponsored Christmas gift giveaway program for children went awry in Aracaju, Brazil. Forty to forty-five thousand people showed up at a public building for the holiday event, approximately the crowd size anticipated. Tens of thousands of people waiting to receive their free gifts were caught in a craze when one of the main gates opened triggering a surge and crush, according to local news reports. In spite of the deaths, government authorities continued the distribution of toys, after order was restored. 
  • 2001 (December 22nd) SEVEN DIE IN DISCO CROWD DISASTER Seven pre-teens and teens died in a crowd trampling in Sofia, Bulgaria, on Friday night. The victims--between 10-and 14-years-old--were among thousands of young people celebrating the start of the Christmas holiday at the Indigo, the country's largest disco club. Tomas Shumaher, a popular German DJ headlined the event. From national news media accounts, it appears the disaster was triggered by poor crowd management and by entrance stairs that were described as "icy." There are also conflicting reports about a possible structural collapse inside the club. Approximately 1000 to 1500 young people were waiting to enter the already crowded club when the entrance doors were "suddenly" opened, according to one Bulgarian news wire report. Many in the young crowd likely slipped on the icy stairs as the formerly waiting mass of ticket holders surged forward toppling people in front of them. Many in the crowd found themselves trapped and then trampled. Suffocation was pronounced the cause of death for the seven killed in the crush. President-elect Georgi Parnanov told the AFP news wire, "Conditions in the disco were primitive and this incident should have been foreseen." An official day of mourning will correspond with the burial of the victims. In the meantime, the Interior Ministry closed all disco clubs in Bulgaria to review current club security and crowd management procedures. Yesterday's tragic outcome is common to public assembly events where patrons waiting to enter a place are not properly organized or processed. The Indigo disco disaster was easily avoidable.
  • 2002 (Jan 8th) Japanese Mall Event Organizers Create Crowd Craze--10 Injured. The Tama Plaza Tokyu Shopping Centre in Yokohama, Japan, thought they had a good publicity stunt for the first day of the new year. What they really planned was a classic crowd craze situation that caused injury to at least 10 people, two of whom were sent to a local hospital. The marketing scheme went like this: A promotion offering "lucky bags" ("fukubukuro") containing merchandise more valuable than their retail price were offered to the public by the shopping Centre on New Year's day. As a result, a large crowd lined up at the shopping Centre to obtain the specially priced bags. Anxiety and competitiveness developed in the waiting crowd, as could be anticipated. When the doors of the Centre opened mid morning, the shoppers surged forward. The craze caused a crowd collapse as people toppled over each other
  • 2004 (Sept 3rd) IKEA Regrets Fatal Stampede JEDDAH, 3 September 2004 — The management of IKEA has expressed its sorrow for the fatal incident that took place during the opening of its new showroom in Jeddah on Wednesday morning. “As the main door opened around 9 a.m., an hour before the scheduled time because of the swelling crowd, those standing toward the end of the queue caused the stampede by pushing their way toward the main entrance,” Amin M. Jamal, executive vice president of IKEA - Ghassan Ahmed Al Sulaiman Co. Ltd., told Arab News. “People at the tail end of the crowd turned ‘adventurous’ when they found there were no prospects of getting close to the door. They pushed their way by jumping over others in front and even trampling upon those who lost their balance and lay on the ground,” Jamal said. All security arrangements were in place, he claimed, as a big crowd was anticipated. “However, in spite of the arrangements made by our own security and official agencies that were tried and tested in the past few weeks, the fatal incident took pace, which we regret. Fortunately, no child was involved in the stampede. We take full responsibility for the unfortunate incident if it is found that it happened due to our safety and security lapses,” Jamal said. The IKEA management expected 3,000 to 5,000 shoppers to visit the showroom for its opening. “We didn’t expect 20,000, especially as it was a working day and the morning was hot and humid,” he said, adding that the turnout was big because of the Swedish furniture company’s “popularity and reputation.” “Of course, there are many ways of offering discounts and prizes,” Jamal said. “Man learns from experience. We now have a case to evaluate and analyze on which to organize ourselves in the future,” he said in the context of the stampede.

Yet a few months later the incident was repeated in London....

  • 10th February 2005. Man Stabbed in Ikea Opening Chaos. London - Edmonton. Safety fears forced the store to shut 30 minutes after it opened. A man was stabbed and several people hurt in the crush as a crowd of thousands forced a flagship Ikea superstore to close on its opening night. Cars were abandoned on the roadside and customers were crushed in the chaos which ensued after the furniture store in north London launched at midnight. The new outlet in Edmonton, the biggest Ikea in England, was due to trade for a full 24 hours, but shut up shop within around half an hour after an "unforeseen volume of customers'' descended in the early hours. A spokeswoman said it was decided to close for the safety of customers and staff, and the store would remain shut until further notice. "Ikea Edmonton regrets to announce that a decision has been taken to close the store on opening night. "The decision was made in the interests of health and safety for all Ikea customers and co-workers,'' she said.
  • From the ITN internet news. Furniture giant Ikea was forced to shut its flagship superstore on its opening night after chaos broke out and a man was stabbed. Over 4,000 people had flocked to the store which was touting cut-price offers throughout the 24-hour opening, including a three-seater leather sofa for £45.But after around 30 minutes, it was decided it should close for the safety of customers and staff. Would-be bargain-hunters abandoned their cars on the A406 north circular road, with one person stabbed and others suffering crush injuries and heat exhaustion in the chaos, according to the emergency services. The new store in Edmonton, north London, the biggest Ikea outlet in England, opened at midnight and was due to trade for a full 24 hours. A London Ambulance Service spokesman said nine ambulances, one rapid response car, four officers and an emergency control vehicle were sent to the scene. He added: "Six adult patients were treated and taken to hospital, three each to North Middlesex and Whipps Cross hospitals. Of these, one man had been stabbed and another patient was experiencing chest pains. "The four other people were understood to have sustained a range of minor injuries. "A spokeswoman for Scotland Yard said: "Many people abandoned their vehicles in the middle of the A406, making their way to the store on foot. This has caused severe traffic difficulties. "A spokeswoman for London Fire Brigade said: "We were called to assist London Ambulance Service - attendance was delayed by approximately 1,000 cars getting into the store car park. "There were 22 persons suffering from heat exhaustion and crush injuries ... and approximately 3,000 members of the public were discharged from the site by the police."
  • Later reports cite the numbers closer to 6,000 people at the Ikea riots.

Crowds can be extremely dangerous - there are many ways to achieve crowd safety.

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The Price of a Pilgrimage: Danger called an inherent factor when throngs gather for religious observances by Andrea Useem RELIGION NEWS SERVICE - Saturday, September 10, 2005. The stampede during a Shiite religious pilgrimage in Baghdad on Aug. 31, which left nearly 1,000 dead, was not the first time that a large number of Muslims have died as they performed religious rituals. As recently as last year, almost 250 pilgrims died in a stampede near Mecca during an annual Muslim pilgrimage. An earlier stampede during the hajj, in 1990, left more than 1,450 dead in a pedestrian tunnel. Experts say that mass religious gatherings always carry the danger of stampedes - and that such danger is sometimes seen as a sacrificial aspect of the pilgrimage. Nonetheless, they say practical steps, such as clear signage, can and should be taken to control crowds and save lives. "Any environment where millions of people converge has a significant risk associated with the dynamics of crowds," said G. Keith Still, G4S Professor of Crowd Science at Bucks New University.

Religious gatherings have claimed the most casualties over the years, but secular gatherings have posed similar hazards. Stampedes at sports stadiums and entertainment venues claimed 1,952 lives worldwide since 1988, according to data compiled by Crowd Modelling Ltd. In that same period, 2,586 died in tramplings at religious events - all of them in Saudi Arabia, India and Pakistan. A particular trouble spot has been the Jamarat Bridge in Mina, Saudi Arabia. On a single day during the annual three-day hajj ritual, 2.5 million pilgrims attempt to gather around one of three stone pillars representing the devil and cast small stones at it in an act of purification. In the past 11 years, four stampedes have left 699 dead and many more injured. Michael Wolfe, an American Muslim who has written two books about the hajj, said that one problem has been the crowd flow around the three pillars. When people finished throwing their stones and turned to leave, others were pressing forward to cast their stones, he said. "But there is also an enthusiasm factor. Stoning the pillars is the last rite of hajj, and throwing the stones can be a physical release. People really want to get into it," said Wolfe, explaining why pilgrims surged forward even before others cleared the way. In response to the recurrent tragedies on the bridge, Saudi officials have started an expansion and renovation project that will eventually allow 4 million pilgrims to pass over the bridge in one day. Part of the project was already completed by the 2005 hajj season and was credited with the lack of fatalities. An important aspect of crowd control at the Jamarat Bridge was providing more information, like signage, wrote Still, who was hired by Saudi authorities to help redesign the bridge. "Lack of information can turn a passive crowd into a stampede. The consequences of a crowd crush can be much worse than the incident" that triggers it, wrote Still in the U.K.'s Guardian newspaper in 2003. In the same article he warned that public fears about terrorism make a crowd especially vulnerable to stampedes - all factors that seemed to be at play in Baghdad in August. The stampede on the al-Aima bridge was reportedly sparked when rumors about a suicide bomber caused a panic. With little information and no exit routes, many died when they jumped or were pushed into the Tigris River below. Under Saddam Hussein's regime, few Shiites were allowed to visit their holy sites, and religious leaders have urged worshippers to turn out in large numbers to show their strength in the post-Saddam era, according to Iraq observers. Yet Iraq's infrastructure and law enforcement do not yet seem capable of safely handling large crowds. Safe mass pilgrimage is possible, as demonstrated by the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadaloupe in Mexico, the largest pilgrimage site in the Western hemisphere. More than 1 million worshippers gather there for a special feast day each year, and no major stampedes have occurred, said Timothy Matovina, a theology professor at the University of Notre Dame who has attended the feast day. Matovina described how site planners have constructed a sort of conveyor belt system, with several moving walkways that pass in front of the image of Our Lady of Guadaloupe, which is the main sacred attraction at the basilica. As desirable as it may seem to make all pilgrimages safe and comfortable, a certain degree of hardship has always been part of the pilgrimage experience, according to Kerry Walters, a philosophy professor at Gettysburg College who has studied the phenomenon. "Medieval accounts of Westerners going to Jerusalem are filled with stories of harrowing dangers," Walters said. "The quality of the pilgrimage was proportionate to the amount of danger faced. It became a virtue in and of itself."

Monday, 31, October, 2005 (28, Ramadhan, 1426)  7 Die in Rush to Receive Zakat Hassan Adawi, Arab News JEDDAH, 31 October 2005 Seven people died and more than 40 were injured in a stampede in Makkah after prayers in the Grand Mosque as many hundreds rushed to grab charity cash handouts early yesterday. The incident occurred on Lailat Al-Qadr (the Night of Power) on Ramadan 27 when a philanthropist distributed zakat money directly to the needy in a car park some six kilometers from the mosque. Police rushed to the scene and eventually restored order, controlling the crowd sufficiently to allow access for ambulances from the Red  Crescent to get through to the dead and injured. They were taken to nearby hospitals for treatment and identification. Ahmad Al-Harbi, a resident of Makkah, told Arab News that he had helped in taking the injured to hospitals. He said those who had died in the stampede were taken to Al-Noor Hospital in Makkah. According to Al-Harbi, the crowd that gathered to receive the charity included Saudis as well as expatriates. He said that most of the injured were women and that this was the first time such a stampede had taken place during the distribution of zakat in the city. “More and more people rushed to the parking lot when they heard about the charity handouts,” Al-Harbi said while explaining the reason for the stampede. He said he noticed that the crowd that gathered for the charity included even some wealthier people who owned luxury cars. No foreign pilgrims were involved in the stampede.

Saturday, 4th Feb 2006. Stampede at Philippine stadium kills 79 by John O'Callaghan MANILA (Reuters) - Seventy-nine people were killed in a stampede at a stadium in Manila on Saturday as they scrambled to get tickets for a popular Philippine television game show, the government and witnesses said. Most of the dead were elderly women, crushed against a closed steel gate at the bottom of a slope or trampled underfoot. One child was killed, hospital officials said. Some witnesses said chaos erupted when someone shouted "bomb" but most survivors blamed the crowd surging for the tickets. "My mother came here hoping to win a prize," said one man in his 20s,holding her dead hand and sobbing. More than 200 injured people were taken to one government hospital. Some survivors went to private hospitals and their number was not immediately known. Police said as many as 25,000 people were lining up outside the Ultra stadium when guards started to handout ticket sat dawn for the first anniversary celebration of the game show  "Wowowee". "The slope was so steep that when one person stumbled, they fell like dominoes," said Manila's police chief, Vidal Querol.An army truck took the bodies to a funeral parlour after they had been lined up on the street, their faces covered with towels, sheets and newspapers. Hundreds of shoes and flip-flops were scattered across a narrow driveway. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo visited the injured in hospital and was due to survey the scene of thestampede.The Philippines is no stranger to large-scale disasters, most often involving typhoons, volcanoes, earthquakes or ferries, as well as deadly attacks by Muslim and communist rebels. Stampedes are relatively rare, although a crush at a crowded religious procession in the capital last month killed one man and injured 20. TICKET OUT OF POVERTY Some tickets for the "Wowowee" show were given away this week but many fans camped out for days to get tickets at the gate. Even after the stampede, thousands of people refused to leave the area because they wanted a chance at the usual jackpot of 1 million pesos(54,000 pounds) and a special prize for the anniversary of a house and plot of land. Ambulances had trouble reaching the scene because of the large crowd. The ABS-CBN network cancelled the event and appealed to those inside and outside the stadium to go home. "It's insensitive to continue the show, "Charo Santos-Concio, head of entertainment at the network, said on television. "We're all devastated." ABS-CBN said it would pay for the funeral and hospital expenses of victims and survivors. "Wowowee", on six days a week at midday, is one of the most-watched shows in the Philippines and by communities of Filipinos living abroad. "The guards could not control the crowd. People were climbing on the roof of a pathway, scaling the fences just to get inside and rushing to a narrow gate," Susan Doblin, who travelled from the central island of Leyte, told Reuters. "We're very poor. I waited for days outside to try our luck. This is a rare chance for us to win a million pesos." (With reporting by Manny Mogato, Pedro Uchi and Dolly Aglay) Philippines begins inquiry of games how stampede Sun 5 Feb, 2006 2:48:32 GMT By John O'Callaghan MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippine government summoned television executives and security officials to an inquiry on Sunday to determine why74 people died in a stampede for a popular game show giving away cash and prizes. Saturday's tragedy at a stadium in Manila illustrated the desperation of poor Filipinos hoping to win a small fortune or even a minor prize at the first anniversary celebration of the show "Wowowee", commentators and politicians said. Most of the victims were elderly women who were crushed against a steel gate at the bottom of a slope or trampled underfoot as a crowd as large as 50,000 surged forward to try to get a coveted seat inside the stadium. Nearly 400 people were injured. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo ordered a five-member panel to submit a report within 72 hours. The fact-finding body was due to interview executives from the ABS-CBN network, the show's host and the chief of security for the event. "Was there, in the first place, a failure on the part of the show's producers and the anniversary event organisers to prepare for just such an emergency?" the Philippine Daily Inquirer said in an editorial." Was there a failure (a failing shared by many Filipinos, as disaster prevention experts tell us again and again) to imagine that bad things could actually happen? "Witnesses said chaos broke out whena barricade collapsed as people were being let into the stadium, causing guards to panic and slam shut the gate as the crowd pressed forward. Manila's police chief, Vidal Querol, said that once people began stumbling on the slope, "they fell like dominoes ".Before being taken to morgues, the bodies had been lined up on the street, their faces covered with towels and newspapers as grieving relatives and friends crouched beside them. Shoes, handbags and half-eaten snacks were scattered on the pavement. Some tickets had been given out earlier in the week for the anniversary show of "Wowowee", which selects contestants at random from the audience. But thousands of fans, many of them poor and flocking from the provinces, had camped out for days for a chance at the show's usual jackpot of 1million pesos ($19,230) and special prizes of a car and a house with land. "GOOD LESSON" The head of security at ABS-CBN, Rene Luspo, said his team anticipated the crowd would be unruly and had taken "adequate" precautions but that the crush was "more than we expected". "We thought we had done all that was humanly possible," he said. Arroyo's political opponents used the tragedy to take a swipe at her economic record, saying Filipinos would not have risked their lives for prizes on a game show if they had better opportunities. But even Vice President Noli de Castro, a former newscaster at ABS-CBN, acknowledged that the disaster was a "good lesson" for the network's management and the government." Wowowee", on six days a week at midday, is one of the most-watched shows in the Philippines and by communities of Filipinos living abroad." We're very poor. I waited for days outside to try our luck," Susan Doblin, who travelled from the central island of Leyte, told Reuters at the stadium on Saturday. "This is a rare chance for us to win a million pesos." Stampede at Philippine stadium kills 79 Sat 4 Feb, 2006 6:14:04 GMT By John O'Callaghan MANILA (Reuters) - Seventy-nine people were killed in a stampede at a stadium in Manila on Saturday as they scrambled to get tickets for a popular Philippine television game show, the government and witnesses said. Most of the dead were elderly women, crushed against a closed steel gate at the bottom of a slope or trampled underfoot. One child was killed, hospital officials said. Some witnesses said chaos erupted when someone shouted "bomb" but most survivors blamed the crowd surging for the tickets. "My mother came here hoping to win a prize," said one man in his 20s,holding her dead hand and sobbing. More than 200 injured people were taken to one government hospital. Some survivors went to private hospitals and their number was not immediately known. Police said as many as 25,000 people were lining up outside the Ultra stadium when guards started to handout ticket sat dawn for the first anniversary celebration of the game show  "Wowowee". "The slope was so steep that when one person stumbled, they fell like dominoes," said Manila's police chief, Vidal Querol.An army truck took the bodies to a funeral parlour after they had been lined up on the street, their faces covered with towels, sheets and newspapers. Hundreds of shoes and flip-flops were scattered across a narrow driveway. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo visited the injured in hospital and was due to survey the scene of thestampede.The Philippines is no stranger to large-scale disasters, most often involving typhoons, volcanoes, earthquakes or ferries, as well as deadly attacks by Muslim and communist rebels. Stampedes are relatively rare, although a crush at a crowded religious procession in the capital last month killed one man and injured 20. TICKET OUT OF POVERTY Some tickets for the "Wowowee" show were given away this week but many fans camped out for days to get tickets at the gate. Even after the stampede, thousands of people refused to leave the area because they wanted a chance at the usual jackpot of 1 million pesos(54,000 pounds) and a special prize for the anniversary of a house and plot of land. Ambulances had trouble reaching the scene because of the large crowd. The ABS-CBN network cancelled the event and appealed to those inside and outside the stadium to go home. "It's insensitive to continue the show, "Charo Santos-Concio, head of entertainment at the network, said on television. "We're all devastated." ABS-CBN said it would pay for the funeral and hospital expenses of victims and survivors. "Wowowee", on six days a week at midday, is one of the most-watched shows in the Philippines and by communities of Filipinos living abroad. "The guards could not control the crowd. People were climbing on the roof of a pathway, scaling the fences just to get inside and rushing to a narrow gate," Susan Doblin, who travelled from the central island of Leyte, told Reuters. "We're very poor. I waited for days outside to try our luck. This is a rare chance for us to win a million pesos." (With reporting by Manny Mogato, Pedro Uchi and Dolly Aglay) Philippines begins inquiry of games how stampede Sun 5 Feb, 2006 2:48:32 GMT By John O'Callaghan MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippine government summoned television executives and security officials to an inquiry on Sunday to determine why74 people died in a stampede for a popular game show giving away cash and prizes. Saturday's tragedy at a stadium in Manila illustrated the desperation of poor Filipinos hoping to win a small fortune or even a minor prize at the first anniversary celebration of the show "Wowowee", commentators and politicians said. Most of the victims were elderly women who were crushed against a steel gate at the bottom of a slope or trampled underfoot as a crowd as large as 50,000 surged forward to try to get a coveted seat inside the stadium. Nearly 400 people were injured. President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo ordered a five-member panel to submit a report within 72 hours. The fact-finding body was due to interview executives from the ABS-CBN network, the show's host and the chief of security for the event. "Was there, in the first place, a failure on the part of the show's producers and the anniversary event organisers to prepare for just such an emergency?" the Philippine Daily Inquirer said in an editorial." Was there a failure (a failing shared by many Filipinos, as disaster prevention experts tell us again and again) to imagine that bad things could actually happen? "Witnesses said chaos broke out whena barricade collapsed as people were being let into the stadium, causing guards to panic and slam shut the gate as the crowd pressed forward. Manila's police chief, Vidal Querol, said that once people began stumbling on the slope, "they fell like dominoes ".Before being taken to morgues, the bodies had been lined up on the street, their faces covered with towels and newspapers as grieving relatives and friends crouched beside them. Shoes, handbags and half-eaten snacks were scattered on the pavement. Some tickets had been given out earlier in the week for the anniversary show of "Wowowee", which selects contestants at random from the audience. But thousands of fans, many of them poor and flocking from the provinces, had camped out for days for a chance at the show's usual jackpot of 1million pesos ($19,230) and special prizes of a car and a house with land. "GOOD LESSON" The head of security at ABS-CBN, Rene Luspo, said his team anticipated the crowd would be unruly and had taken "adequate" precautions but that the crush was "more than we expected". "We thought we had done all that was humanly possible," he said. Arroyo's political opponents used the tragedy to take a swipe at her economic record, saying Filipinos would not have risked their lives for prizes on a game show if they had better opportunities. But even Vice President Noli de Castro, a former newscaster at ABS-CBN, acknowledged that the disaster was a "good lesson" for the network's management and the government." Wowowee", on six days a week at midday, is one of the most-watched shows in the Philippines and by communities of Filipinos living abroad." We're very poor. I waited for days outside to try our luck," Susan Doblin, who travelled from the central island of Leyte, told Reuters at the stadium on Saturday. "This is a rare chance for us to win a million pesos." 

6th Feb 2007 Primark's £8 jeans and £2 bikinis cause stampede By 10am, the doors had been knocked off their hinges by the eager shoppers, desperate to get hold of a pair of £8 jeans. By 11am, a floor manager had been knocked to the ground by the hordes, trampling all that was in their path in search of a £2 bikini. And by noon the queue to get in snaked all the way down Oxford Street to Marble Arch with a waiting time estimated at a couple of hours.

When Primark, one of the cheapest and - if brightly coloured clothes are a sign of cheer - most cheerful clothing retailers opened its first central London store yesterday the company hoped for "a healthy custom". Instead, what they got was a stampede rivalling the competition for tickets for Glastonbury.  Sheila Drouin, 61, had come up from Bath with a friend for the opening. "When I heard they were opening a flagship store my friend and I decided to make a day of it," she said, clutching a £20 duvet set. Hannah Martin, 18, was there for "the nice and cheap clothes. At Topshop jeans are £40 but here they're at most £12. The rest of the high street has missed a trick." Part of the hysteria reflected the canniness of the retailer, first by opening during the school holidays and, second, according to some shoppers, the rumour that everything in the shop was going to be given away for £1. This turned out to be untrue, but may have accounted at least in part for the stampede. This opening is the latest triumph for the retailer which has become one of the biggest fashion successes of the past three years. In the past 18 months Primark, which opened its first store in Ireland in 1969 under the name Penneys, has increased its square footage of business by over 70%. It has shaken off its tatty image and been featured in Vogue and received the ultimate accolade of being given an affectionate nickname by the fashion press - Pri-Marni - thanks to its occasionally clever takes on designer pieces which it can knock out just weeks after the clothes feature on the couture catwalks.

But its main appeal is that it's cheap, a factor emphasised overwhelmingly in the new store. There is a rail of women's smart leather jackets for £12 each. Upstairs there is a men's section (khaki trousers at £4) and bags remarkably similar to ones sold in Chloe for over £700 for less than a hundredth of that price. Primark's success reflects how the high street has changed. "Going back just 15 years the industry was dominated by the mid-market such as BhS, Littlewoods, C&A and department stores," said Seamus Halford, deputy manager of Primark. "The term 'value retailer' didn't even exist then. Now there's us, Matalan, New Look, Tesco and George at Asda. C&A is gone and we bought out Littlewoods last year." Over the last Christmas period high street stores in the middle market suffered. Instead, it was the premium end, such as Marks & Spencers, and the lower end, represented by New Look, Tesco, Asda and Primark, which showed the strongest results. But low prices come at a cost. Last year the charity War on Want in a report claimed that Bangladeshi workers making clothes for factories that supply to Asda, Tesco and Primark are paid as little as 3p an hour. When questioned about this Primark's director, Breege O'Donoghue, said: "We have been a member of the Ethical Trading Initiative [ETI] since last May and we are working closely with them." Yet War on Want's report suggested that the ETI's stipulations have had little effect. The report said: "Investigation for this report shows that, in reality, working hours in factories supplying all three retailers far exceed [the stipulated] maximum." "We have a three-year strategy in place to take us from where we are now to where we want to be," said Ms O'Donoghue. And how does the former differ from the latter? "It's all part of being on a journey," she replied. When pressed repeatedly for specifics she conceded that the company "wants to work more closely with our suppliers and for them to understand what ETI is about". Shoppers, however, were unconcerned about such matters. "I don't know, I think the clothes are produced in Spain. And that's all right, isn't it?" asked Hannah Martin, picking up another dress.

30th November 2008. Wal-Mart Death Clearly Avoidable. When the Store manager of the Wal-Mart saw that thousands of shoppers had collected outside the store and were worked up into a frenzied mob, why not open the doors early? Was it a store policy not to open the doors early or was it a bad management decision? Who bears more responsibility, the shoppers who trampled him or the company that employed him? CNN reports that the local Union for retailers believes that Wal-Mart is responsible. Jdimytai Damour, 34, was crushed as he and other employees attempted to unlock the doors of a Long Island, New York, store at 5 a.m. Friday, police said. “This incident was avoidable,” said Bruce Both, president of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500, the state of New York’s largest grocery worker’s union. “Where were the safety barriers? Where was security? How did store management not see dangerous numbers of customers barreling down on the store in such an unsafe manner? “This is not just tragic; it rises to a level of blatant irresponsibility by Wal-Mart,” he said. Wal-Mart has taken the position that this was simply a tragic accident. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the deceased,” Wal-Mart Senior Vice President Hank Mullany said in the statement. “We are continuing to work closely with local law enforcement, and we are reaching out to those involved.” The Union. however believes that Wal-mart is directly to blame. “If the safety of their customers and workers was a top priority, then this never would have happened,” said Patrick Purcell, a projects director for the local UFCW. “Wal-Mart must step up to the plate and ensure that all those injured, as well as the family of the deceased, be financially compensated for their injuries and their losses. Their words are weak.” The UFCW has long been a harsh critic of Wal-Mart’s, arguing that the world’s largest retailer offers low wages and poor health care for its workers and pushes competitors and suppliers to do the same or go out of business. The group has had only marginal success in organizing Wal-Mart workers in the United States and Canada, citing aggressive anti-union efforts by Wal-Mart. The police are reviewing the store videotape to try to identify the shoppers who trampled the employee, but who bears the greater responsibility? Wal-Mart or the shoppers? Who should be prosecuted?

Dec 30 2008 X Factor fans hurt in Croydon JLS ticket stampede. Monday 8th December 2008By Guardian Reporter - Teen fans of Croydon X Factor sensation JLS have been injured in a stampede outside Fairfield Halls. More than 1,000 fans are packed outside the theatre, completely surrounding barriers awaiting the appearance of the boy band. A crowd surge minutes ago resulted in three ambulances being called to deal with injuries. Officers from four ambulance and three fast response cars have been helping the injured from the crowd. One teenager said she had been caught in the crush alongside a pregnant woman. She was helped from the crowd after suffering an asthma and panic attack.  "I'd been queuing since 1pm but when the school kids turned up it became so busy with them all pushing us towards the front," she said. "There was a pregnant woman in the crowd. "It was horrible. I couldn't move. I couldn't get out." Another teen said: "It was very scary. It was madness." Many blamed organisers for the crowd trouble for giving the impression on flyers handed out in the town centre the concert was free. However, tickets were required to see JLS and 1,700 of them had all been allocated by 2pm, according to girls in the crowd. Charlotte Robinosn, 16, from South Croydon: "Everyone thought they could get in. "They were handing out flyers for the event in town saying it was a free concert but when we turned up we were told we couldn't get in. "We wouldn't have turned up if we had known. We have been standing here for hours." Katrine Clarke, 17, from Norbury said: "Everything could have been handled better. "The only reason so many people turned up was because we thought it was free. Nobody mentioned you needed tickets to get in." Jessica Noble, 16, hurt her arm after being crushed in the crowd. She said: "We turned up early top get in, but once the school kids turned up everyone started pushing. "We were stuck at the front and we were being pushed forward by the people behind us and pushed back by the police. "It was very scary. I am sure we will get the blame for any trouble but the only raeson so many of us showed up was because we thought it was free.  "I am really disappointed. We were given false information." Naomi Horsford, 16, from Thornton Heath said: "There were too many people here and not enough people controlling things." Elizabeth Ogbu, 17, from Streatham said: "I came a long way to see JLS. We all left college early so we could get in then we found out we had to have tickets." Chantelle Cope, 17, from New Addington said: "I got bruises on my hand from getting pushed in the crowd and I lost my mobile phone in the crowd." About 20 police officers turned up around 6pm to push the crowds back and there were a couple of tussles with youths who refused to move away from the barriers. A London Ambulance Service spokesman said six people were being treated at the scene, one for an injured hand, one with abdominal pains and another with breathing difficulties.  A Croydon police spokeswoman said officers and ambulance crews were called shortly after 4pm. "Five people were injured during the incident," she said. "All are believed to be minor injuries. "The most serious injury is thought to be a suspected fractured wrist." The crowd began gathering at 4.30pm ahead of the band’s expected performance at 6pm. Hardcore fans began lining up for the show in the cold early this morning.

October 30th - JLS - Trafford Centre 2009. NEVER go out shopping when JLS are in town.The pop quartet sparked mayhem when they turned up at the Trafford Centre in Manchester to switch on the mall's Christmas lights. Performing to a sea of screaming girls, the band appear to be thriving on the hysteria they're whipping up. Not what you'd expect to see on a trip to the supermarket...

Nov 14th 2009 - Sixty people hurt in crush to see JLS at Christmas lights event in BirminghamAt least 60 people suffered crush injuries when the crowd at a Christmas lights switch-on in Birmingham surged forward after X Factor runners-up JLS took to the stage. By Ian Johnston Published: 6:59PM GMT 14 Nov 2009

jls

A metal barrier penning the crowd in collapsed, causing the crowd to surge forward Photo: BBC

The band had just started performing at the event in the city centre on Saturday, when a metal barrier penning the crowd in collapsed. Four people had to be taken to hospital with the others treated at the scene. The rest of the concert and lights switch-on were cancelled as paramedics set up a special unit to treat the wounded. According to reports, about 27,000 people turned up for a show at Millennium Point on Jennens Lane, which had been expected to attract just 5,000 fans. The Sugababes were also due to perform, but the concert was hastily cancelled after the surge at around 1.30pm. Laura Hayes, 24, said there were people crying and screaming in chaotic scenes. "I saw one girl who had sprained her ankle in the crush, she was hobbling and crying," she said. "When they announced they were stopping the gig, loads of people started throwing bottles and umbrellas at the stage. "I was really scared and there were lots of people pushing and shoving, I think they had let too many people get close to the stage." A spokesman for Birmingham City Council said that the concert had descended into mayhem as fans tried to get too close to the stage. "We have had fans being lifted out of the crowd fainting and people being crushed, it's not going well," she said. One woman in her 30s suffered serious crush injuries to her pelvis, shoulder and leg. Another woman broke her ankle in the surge. A teenage boy fractured his wrist, while a girl in her teens suffered crush injuries to her back and legs. A ambulance service spokeswoman said: “The remaining 56 patients suffered minor crush injuries and a range of minor medical complaints. They did not require further hospital treatment and were all discharged by ambulance crews at the scene.” Joan Durose, head of events at Birmingham City council said: “At 1.30pm, we reached capacity and closed the gates with just under 20,000 people in the square. “At the end of JLS’s performance, a safety fence was breached allowing too many people on the square. “We are very sorry that the event has had to be cancelled, we know that people will be very disappointed, but the health and safety of the thousands of young people at the event was our prime concern.” Councillor Martin Mullaney, in charge of leisure, sport and culture at the council, said the concert had been cancelled in the interests of public safety. "I would sooner read headlines about red faces than read headlines about a tragedy," he said. "There are a combination of factors including overnight high winds damaging the fences, thousands of people broke through the fences towards the end of JLS's performance and once that happened we had to act quickly. There was an emergency plan for the event and that came into play. "I'm sorry a lot of people went home disappointed and there will be a full investigation into what went wrong and what lessons can be learned for the future but I must stress that this was the correct decision in the circumstances.

April 2010. American Apparel sale closed in London after scuffles. April 2nd 2010 - Up to 10 police officers were injured after scuffles broke out when 2,000 people descended on London's Brick Lane for a sale by a US clothing chain. The Met Police said it was called to the American Apparel event, the first day of a planned four-day sale, because of the unexpected turnout. The firm stopped the event, blaming the "dangerous behaviour" of people in the line, but plan to open on Saturday. A police spokesman said three people were arrested on public order offences. He said officers were called to the scene at 1015 BST on Friday because of the large crowd.

Website promotion

He said: "The organisers were unable to ensure the safety of the public and decided to close the event. "Police had not been notified in advance of the numbers expected to attend. The organisers were spoken to by police." He said the 10 police officers had minor injuries. The sale had been advertised on social networking websites with offers of items starting from £1 and 85% discounts.

'Get there early'

The company had said it had hired more than 22,000 sq ft (2,044 sq m) of space especially for the sale. It had urged customers to "get there early" and said more than 50,000 people had come to similar sales in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, San Diego, Miami, Berlin and Austin. In a statement, American Apparel apologised and said Friday's response to the Rummage Sale event in London was "overwhelming and humbling". "Some unfortunate and downright dangerous behaviour in the queue prompted the police to temporarily close the event down until they could ensure security for everyone involved. "In our many rummage sales, we've never witnessed anything like it and are disappointed and sorry that it happened. "Fortunately we were able to work out an urgent arrangement for extra security that will allow us to continue to run the rummage sale as planned this weekend and Monday." Alex Dowle, 18, was among those in the crowd. He told the BBC News website that he had heard about the event online and decided to visit with some friends. He said lines had already built up by the time he got there at about 1045 BST. He said: "I walked there from Liverpool Street station and it looked like everyone was on a pilgrimage to the site. "When we got there there wasn't any violence - just a lot of people queuing for miles. It was moving slowly and then a couple of guys seems to just dash for the door but the police moved them away. It was calm again after that. "I think people were just disappointed as I don't think anybody got in at all.” "They didn't appear to have organised it very well on the first day and I'm not planning to go again."

Security at American Apparel for Brick Lane sales

Police said they had no advance notice of the event. A clothes retailer has provided extra security after 10 police officers were injured when 2,000 people descended on its east London store for a sale. Officers were called to the Brick Lane branch of American Apparel because of an unexpected turnout for its four-day sale which began on Friday morning. The sale was halted with less than 30 people making it to the tills. On Saturday, the security was doubled and doors opened early to avoid a potential crush. 

'Everyone happy'

"Everyone is happy today," said American Apparel brand manager Jan Hubner. "The problem yesterday was that the line wasn't controlled from early in the morning. "At 10am there was a burst of people coming to the front door. We couldn't control that. We knew it was going to be big but not this big."

Justin Bieber concert canceled after crowd crush. Associated Press - April 26, 2010 4:11 PM PDT SYDNEY - Thousands of frenzied teenagers, who spent the night camped out by Sydney Harbour awaiting a concert by pop star Justin Bieber, surged toward the venue Monday morning, sending at least eight girls to the hospital and injuring several more. Police canceled the performance after the swarm, which may have begun when rumors spread that the 16-year-old Canadian heartthrob had arrived early. In the crush, at least 10 girls fainted, and paramedics had to pull them out of the crowd, according to Australia's Network Seven. Of the eight sent to the hospital, one fractured her knee cap, though most had hyperventilated. "We were expecting this to be the biggest concert we ever had, but we just couldn't have foreseen this scale," said Grant Denyer, the weather presenter for Network Seven's Sunrise program, which was planning to broadcast the open-air concert. Police said the station was well prepared, but that the frenzy of 5,000 fans got out of control. "They wouldn't listen to our directions, so hence they left us with no option," Deputy Commissioner Dave Owens told reporters, adding it was a concern that so many youngsters were out at night without their parents. Monica Caruana, 14, said the commotion started when the venue opened early. "The doors were meant to open at 5, but they opened at 3 for some reason and everyone bolted," she said, adding that one of her friends was "knocked out" in the chaos. The singer was meant to take the stage just before 8 a.m. Jessica Whatmore said she feared she would be trampled in all the pushing and shoving. "I couldn't wait to get out of there," said the 13-year-old. After the cancellation, many of the girls went to Network Seven's studios, where they caught a glimpse of Bieber through a window before he performed his hit "Baby" on the stage there.

2011 - December 26th - Riots over Nike "Air Jordans" - Crowd Crazing

Reports are coming in form across USA and UK about riots over nike's Air Jordan's

Riots and arrests over latest Nike Air Jordan's 12/27/2011

A young girl was trampled in Indianapolis, Indiana after purchasing a pair of Nike’s latest model of Air Jordans. The 11 Retro Concor is a new model of sport shoe originally launched in 1996. The craze for buying the latest model of Nike’s range of Michael Jordan-inspired trainers caused such furor on Friday, leading to a series of disturbances and arrests in a number of cities around the US, police revealed. Several people suffered cuts and scratches as a result of fighting that broke out between hopeful shoppers lining up to buy the much-coveted Air Jordan 11 Retro Concord. Released on Friday, the latest of edition of the shoe (originally launched in 1996) is priced at $180. In certain suburbs of Seattle, in the state of Washington, police had to use pepper spray to disperse around 20 customers who started fighting in a local shopping mall. In Atlanta (Georgia), crowds broke down the door to one store which led to the arrest of four people while one woman was detained after leaving her children unattended in her vehicle in order to buy a new pair of Jordan Nikes. Further unrest broke out in Taylor, Michigan, where 100 people broke into a mall, and inToledo, Ohio where three people were arrested, also for breaking and entering. In Indianapolis, Indiana, a girl was trampled in a stampede, while in Maryland police detained four minors and one adult charged with disorderly conduct. In a statement, Nike expressed concern for the incidents and encouraged those who wish to buy the sports shoes to do so “in a safe and respectful manner”. The sports shoes are greatly sought after for their design and for being the new edition of a model originally brought out in 1996 when Michael Jordan was at the height of his career. Pairs are already being sold on eBay for as much as 600 dollars. The disturbances registered last Friday were reminiscent of similar violent incidents which occurred 20 years ago, when attacks and even murders were carried out by people anxious to obtain a pair of the very first Air Jordans, which were launched by Nike in 1984.

UK Stabbing on Oxford Street (London)

Det Ch Insp Mark Dunne urged witnesses to come forward following the fatal stabbing on Oxford Street's busiest shopping day Fourteen people have been arrested by police investigating two stabbings on London's busiest shopping street. Officers are to quiz 11 of those held over the murder of an 18-year-old man near the Foot Locker store on Oxford Street at 13:45 GMT on Monday. Scotland Yard has now confirmed the shopping street had been fully re-opened, but a small crime cordon is still in place outside Foot Locker. The victim died at the scene near the junction with Stratford Place. Police reopened the area early on Tuesday morning Less than five hours later, near Oxford Circus, a man aged 21 was stabbed in the thigh. Three people have been arrested. Police said it was too early to confirm whether or not the two incidents were connected. However, Insp Bruce Middlemiss, the duty officer for police in Westminster, said: "They are a similar sort of circumstances, youths, possibly from the same south London area."

'Assortment' of weapons

The first stabbing happened at the height of what is traditionally the busiest shopping day on Oxford Street. A post-mortem examination of the victim is due to take place later and his next-of-kin have been informed, but his identity has not been released. Mim Shaikh, who was friends with the victim, said: "I lived in the same block as him and we went to the same high school. We'd go down to play football together. "When I'd see him in the street, he'd give me a cheeky grin and a nod." Det Ch Insp Mark Dunne said there appeared to have been two groups of young people "opposing each other" prior to the fatal stabbing. He added: "A number of weapons have been recovered from that scene. Whether I have got the murder weapon I don't know. "There's an assortment of items but no guns. This is probably the busiest place in the United Kingdom right now on the busiest shopping day so it's been difficult for us to piece together what has happened and clear this area to do the job we are paid to do and work out a sequence of events here. The flipside of that is we have probably more witnesses than we would normally have and I'm very much looking forward to them coming and speaking to us." The area, close to Bond Street Tube, was closed between Duke Street and New Bond Street and shops within the cordon were forced to close. Police reopened the area 06:00 GMT on Tuesday, with just a small crime scene cordoned off outside Foot Locker.

'High presence'

The second stabbing took place near to the junction with Regent Street at 18:20 GMT. The 21-year-old victim is in a stable condition and his injury is not thought to be life-threatening. Three men have been arrested in connection with the attack and are in custody awaiting questioning. Mr Middlemiss said the public should not feel unsafe shopping in the West End. "There is a high police presence here, we have a number of operations in place already for the shopping times because we were aware of the amount of people who would be here," he said. "We are going to go back and review the intelligence for both incidents and see if we need to increase the police presence here, but at the moment we are not concerned for ordinary members of the public who are shopping.

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Police called in for Norwich Ikea store opening 15:20 28 October 2015

Police will be making sure the Norwich Ikea opening runs smoothly on Monday with officers brought in to Sweet Briar Retail Park. In 2005 up to 6,000 eager shoppers flooded to the newly opened Edmonton store, in north London, after the furniture giant advertised discounts. Riots broke out and the store closed after just 30 minutes, resulting in many people getting crushed in the chaos.

The Swedish brand’s debut click and collect store will have police, store security and queue control when it opens at 10am.It will not be offering any opening day discounts but will have Swedish meatballs and lingonberry jam. Roger Cooper, store manager, said: “We are a Swedish company and we want to share some of our heritage with customers during the opening period. “The first question we were asked was if we were going to have meatballs and it was the most asked question too.” The store took seven months to complete and has created 30 jobs. Mehmet Fevzi, home furnishing manager, explained how the company had been visiting homes in the area to see what people wanted and needed. He said: “We have shown how you can create a room where a child can study and sleep, which was what parents were calling out for on our home visits... or there is a study area downstairs because some parents said they wanted their children with them.” It is open on weekdays from 10am until 8pm, Saturday from 9am until 7pm and on Sunday it will open its doors from 10.30 until 4.30pm.

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