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Belgian festival death toll rises to five

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Belgian festival death toll rises to five


The death toll has risen to five after a violent storm lashed an outdoor pop festival in Belgium.

A further 40 people were injured, some seriously, when the storm struck, uprooting trees and collapsing two stages near Hasselt, east of Brussels.

It all happened suddenly, as festival-goers explained.

“I was first in the dancehall. It started to rain. It was busy, because it was raining. Then the hailstorm came and the tent started to collapse. Everybody wanted to be outside,” said one young woman.

“But others wanted to go inside because of the hailstorm,” another added. “It was complete chaos.”

Up to 65,000 mainly young people were attending the three-day Pukkelpop festival, one of the biggest of its kind in Europe. In the wake of the tragedy, it has now been cancelled.

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