Congress is launching a bipartisan investigation into the tragic circumstances that led to the deaths of ten people at this year’s Astroworld Festival.
According to The Washington Post, the probe will examine Live Nation’s role in the Houston-based event, including the company’s pre-show planning and logistics, and how it responded once it became apparent that a large crowd surge had killed or injured scores of concert-goers.
On Wednesday, the House Oversight and Reform Committee sent a letter to Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino seeking documents detailing Astroworld’s security and crowd control planning, and requested that Live Nation brief members of the committee by January 12th.
“Recent reports raise serious concerns about whether your company took adequate steps to ensure the safety of the 50,000 concertgoers who attended Astroworld Festival,” the committee wrote in its letter to Rapino.
Last week, a medical examiner ruled that all ten Astroworld victims had died as a result of “compression asphyxia,” which is caused when respiration is prevented by external pressure on the body, limiting oxygen supply to the lungs. Such was the case when the densely packed crowd at Astroworld surged to the stage, causing numerous individuals to become crushed and trampled.
The ten victims ranged in age from nine to 27 years old.
The committee’s letter makes no mention of Astroworld’s headliner and curator, Travis Scott, so it appears — at least, initially — that the focus is squarely on Live Nation. For his part, Scott denied knowing that Astroworld was a mass casualty event until after he finished performing, and recently took steps to remove himself as a plaintiff in the bevy of civil suits filed in response to the tragedy.