While The World Focused On London, Another Tragedy Happened In Turin

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After the news of yet another terror attack ripped through Britain at around 10pm last night, a nation descended into anger and grief.

But elsewhere, as many Londoners fled the terror threat, Italian football fans were also scrambling for their own safety in a stampede that has left 1,527 people injured, according to local hospital figures.

Thousands of football fans were gathered in Turin to watch a live outdoor screening of Juventus’ Champions League final against Real Madrid, held in Cardiff, when a bang was heard and rumours of an explosion spread.

Just ten minuted before the second half was drawing to a close, panic spread through the crowds amassed in Piazza San Carlo when, tragically, the sound of a firecracker being set off was mistaken for a dangerous explosive device.

In the subsequent rush to escape the perceived threat, thousands of people were trampled and crushed against barriers, which quickly collapsed against the immense pressure of the fearful hoards.

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A witness told La Stampa, one of Italy’s daily newspapers:

I heard an explosion, which must have been a huge firecracker. They shouted: ‘There’s a bomb! Evacuate the square. So we ran away. There were people on the ground, and blood and glass everywhere.

The aftermath struck an eerie chord with onlookers, as many of the distraught fans searched for lost loved ones. Others picked through the debris for belongings. Many had run out of their shoes in the crush.

Police initially said 200 people needed hospital treatment, but the Italian news agency Ansa later put the figure at 1,527, using hospital tallies.

While many were treated on site for cuts, bruises, breaks and various other open wounds, at least seven people, including a seven-year-old child, were seriously hurt.

Local official Renato Saccone said: “The root cause of this was panic. We’ll have to wait a while to understand what triggered it.”

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Some of the injuries occurred as a barrier around the entrance to a nearby underground car park gave way.

Locals were reportedly angry the authorities did not do more to put in place proper crowd control measures, the according to James Reynolds, for the BBC in Rome.

On what should have been an emotional but joyous occasion – the 12th Champions League title for Real Madrid – but instead descended into disaster.

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For Juventus fans, undoubtedly the incident brought back traumatic memories of the 1985 Heysel stadium disaster, where 39 people, mostly Italian fans, died after being crushed against a wall that then collapsed before the European Cup final against Liverpool.

Investigations into how this occurred are ongoing.


Francesca Donovan

Francesca Donovan

A former emo kid who talks too much about 8Chan meme culture, the Kardashian Klan, and how her smartphone is probably killing her. Francesca is a Cardiff University Journalism Masters grad who has done words for BBC, ELLE, The Debrief, DAZED, an art magazine you've never heard of and a feminist zine which never went to print.