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Author Topic:   30 dead, 250 hurt in Iran stadium collapse???
Ardalan
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posted May 07, 2001 09:20     Click Here to See the Profile for Ardalan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Around 250 hurt in Iran stadium collapse

TEHRAN, May 6 (Reuters) - Around 250 people were injured when metal awnings collapsed on top of spectators at a sports stadium in the northern Iranian city of Sari on Sunday, the official Iranian media reported. But hospital sources and a senior sports official denied earlier media reports that several people had been killed.

State television said spectators were hurt when the awnings caved in over part of the seating area of the stadium, packed with up to 40,000 people watching a soccer game between Iran's main soccer club, Pirouzi, and a local team.

It said many people were treated for minor injuries on the spot and quoted sources at Imam Khomeini Hospital in Sari as saying 100 people were brought in for treatment, including one in critical condition and two with possible brain damage.

The sources said there were no fatalities.

IRNA's English-language service had earlier quoted its correspondent on the scene as saying "several people" had been killed and hundreds injured. The head of Iran's Physical Education Organisation, Mustafa Hashemi-Taba, later told IRNA: "Fortunately there were no fatalities in the incident".

He said most of the injured were hurt in a stampede while thousands of people tried to flee the Motaqi stadium, which he said had a capacity of only 10,000.

He said the collapse was due to pressure from spectators sitting on top of the awnings. "They should not have let so many people into the stadium," he added.

An injured man, interviewed by the television from a hospital bed, blamed stadium officials for allowing in such a high number of people. "All they are interested in is money," he said.

"We were sitting down and suddenly some 500 people sitting on the awnings came down on us," one witness said.

The television broadcast footage showing thousands of people running in different directions, apparently trying to flee the stadium. Others were seen pointing in the direction of the affected area while some were trying to help the victims.

Rescue teams with stretchers tried to make their way through the crowds to the scene.

The television said the incident took place during the halftime break and that Iran had set up a committee to investigate the accident.

IRNA later said the incident caused panic in the city and that residents had gathered outside the stadium for news of their relatives who were watching the game.

Police sealed off the area to help rescue workers rush the victims to hospitals and the sirens of ambulances still wailed across the city one hour after the incident.

The television said President Mohammad Khatami had ordered an investigation into the incident and that a special commission had left Tehran for Sari to investigate the causes.

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Ardalan
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posted May 07, 2001 09:22     Click Here to See the Profile for Ardalan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Officials Blame Spectators for the Sari Tragedy

SARI, May 06 (ISP): The reason for the collapse of one of the stands in the Shahid Mottaghi stadium has been blamed on some of the spectators.

One of the IFF representatives in Mazandaran, where the tragedy happened, said there are two main stands in the Mottaghi stadium with roof, some spectators were sitting on the top of these roofs, and as the result, one of these roofs collapsed. He said so far we have about 200 people injured, 5-10 of them are seriously injured.

Due to the number of spectators, Perspolis players were locked in their changing room for an hour, after the game was called off.

Several people are now reported to have been killed in the Shamooshak-Perspolis game. According to the news from Sari, Northern Iran, several hundred people have also been injured. There were 20,000 people inside the stadium. The game itself was stopped just after half time, when Shamooshak was leading 2-0.

Emergency teams are still evacuating the stadium and helping the injured.

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Ardalan
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posted May 08, 2001 09:15     Click Here to See the Profile for Ardalan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Two men die after Iran soccer stadium collapse

By Saeed Komeijani

SARI, Iran, May 7 (Reuters) - Two men died on Monday from injuries they received when metal awnings collapsed onto fans at a soccer stadium in northeast Iran on Sunday under the weight of hundreds of spectators perched on top.

Officials in the town of Sari said nearly 300 people had been injured when the metal girders supporting the awning slowly buckled and fell onto the fans below. Some of the injured were still in critical condition. Some 30,000 people were crammed into the stadium -- official capacity only 10,000 -- to watch local side Shamoushak play top Tehran team Pirouzi in a first division match. Many also clambered onto the roof, officials said.

Doctors said one of the dead men had suffered severe head injuries. The second man, a university student, died in intensive care later on Monday, also from head injuries.

Dr Abdollah Madani, head of medical science at Mazandaran University, told the official IRNA news agency that 284 people had been injured in the collapse and the subsequent stampede.

"A number of the other injured are in critical condition, although they are better than a few hours ago," he said, adding that 107 people remained in hospital.

IRNA originally said several people had been killed.

AWNING NOT MEANT FOR SPECTATORS

"We were sitting down and suddenly some 500 people sitting on the awnings came down on us," said one witness.

Mohammad Jafar Kambouzia, an engineer and member of the investigation committee, told state television: "This awning was designed to protect people from the sun, snow and rain.

"Unfortunately, around 1,500 people had sat on it not knowing that it might collapse. A large number of the injured are those who had sat on this roof."

Television showed supporters streaming on to the pitch, struggling to break down barriers to escape the wreckage.

Newspapers said angry fans inside and outside the stadium had fought with police after the accident. Pirouzi captain Afshin Peyravani received a head injury from a flying stone.

One group of fans armed with sticks and metal bars stormed the part of the stadium reserved for officials, wanting to exact vengeance, the newspaper Resalat said.

"We were praying to God that we would get out of the stadium unharmed," the newspaper Iran quoted one player as saying. "We were surprised because people were throwing stones as if we were responsible."

Local officials said more could easily have been killed.

"Fortunately the collapse, which happened in the second half of the game, was gradual and many escaped," one sports official who declined to be named told Reuters.

One injured man, interviewed by television from a hospital bed, blamed stadium officials for allowing so many people into the ground. "All they are interested in is money," he said.

Sari, a provincial capital of some 800,000 people, was calm on Monday, and residents returned to work as normal.

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Ardalan
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posted May 09, 2001 09:59     Click Here to See the Profile for Ardalan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Police begin with arrests after deadly football tragedy

TEHRAN, May 8 (AFP) - Police have arrested a number of people following the collpase of a football stadium in the northern city of Sari which has left two people dead and close to 300 others injured, a press report said Tuesday.

Quoted by the pro-reform Norouz daily, Morteza Talaii, police chief in Mazandaran province, said officers began arresting a number of people Sunday, soon after a needle match between two top Iranian teams turned to tragedy.

Talaii, who did not specify how many people had been taken in since the accident, said the arrested people only appeared to be spectators, but gave no more details. He said further arrests are expected to be made soon.

Local hospital officials as well as state media confirmed that two people were dead after a stand at Mottaqi stadium in Sari, jampacked with some 30,000 spectators but built to hold only half that many, fell apart during the match on Sunday.

State radio quoted officials as saying that another five people were in serious condition from the tragedy, which left 287 people injured according to officials.

Pirouzi, a perennial league leader with an enthusiastic nationwide following, were losing 2-0 at half-time to local first division competitors Shamushak in a do-or-die elimination cup match at the grounds.

President Mohammad Khatami has asked officials to launch an immediate investigation into the incident, state radio said.

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Ardalan
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posted May 10, 2001 15:13     Click Here to See the Profile for Ardalan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
11 in coma following deadly football stadium collapse

TEHRAN, May 9 (AFP) - Eleven people are in a coma following the tragic collapse of a football stadium in Iran that left two dead, the student ISNA news agency reported Wednesday. Abdollah Madani, a medical official in the northern city of Sari where the tragedy happened Sunday, killing two and injuring 287, said they had been in a coma since the accident.

"They could stay in this clinically dead state a long time," he said.

A number of people have been arrested in connection with the accident, which unfolded during a do-or-die cup-tie between Tehran's Pirouzi, which has a popular nationwide following, and local first-division rivals Shamushak.

An estimated 30,000 were packed into Sari's Mottaqi stadium, built to hold no more than half that number, when the northwest stand collapsed during the match.

President Mohammad Khatami has asked officials to launch an investigation into the incident.

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