Travis Scott, Drake sued over deadly crowd surge at Astroworld festival

Rappers Travis Scott and Drake have been sued over the tragedy that killed eight people at the Astroworld Festival on Saturday.

The pair have been accused of inciting the deadly surge that forced the crowd to “compress” towards the stage.

One man who attended the Houston music festival has filed a civil lawsuit seeking $US1.35 million ($1.82 million) in damages after the rappers egged on the crowd, leaving him and hundreds of others injured.

The eight victims who died were aged 14-27.

The venue, NRG Park, and entertainment company, Live Nation, behind Astroworld are also listed in the suit. It alleges they failed to provide adequate medical services and security at the festival.

Astroworld Festival

Travis Scott’s festival has been referred to as a “mass casualty incident”. Photo: Getty

The lawsuit, filed by Kristian Paredes, 23, blames the rappers for negligently “inciting the crowd” and “a riot and violence”.

The suit states Mr Paredes was standing at the front of the general admission section at the time, near a metal barrier separating the VIP section from the rest of the crowd, CBS report.

Mr Paredes said he “felt an immediate push” when Scott started performing, before “the crowd became chaotic and a stampede began,” the lawsuit read.

“Many begged security guards hired by Live Nation Entertainment for help, but were ignored,” it said.

“Some of the effects are permanent and will abide with the plaintiff for a long time into the future, if not for his entire life.”

Fox News reports Texas lawyer Thomas J. Henry filed the lawsuit on Sunday against Travis Scott – whose real name is Jacques Bermon Webster – and Drake, whose real name is Aubrey Drake Graham.

In a press release announcing the suit, Mr Henry said the two rappers kept performing as vehicles tried to break through the crowd and help the injured concert-goers, while people called for the music to stop.

“Live musical performances are meant to inspire catharsis, not tragedy,” Mr Henry in a press release, according to Fox.

A vigil outside NRG Park for the eight victims. Photo: Getty

“Many of these concert-goers were looking forward to this event for months, and they deserved a safe environment in which to have fun and enjoy the evening. Instead, their night was one of fear, injury, and death.”

Two other concert-goers have also filed lawsuits, according to CBS and Fox, with one listing Scott as a defendant.

US Civil rights lawyer Benjamin Crump, who filed a suit on behalf of 21-year-old attendee Noah Gutierrez, expected more lawsuits to be filed by other alleged victims this week, CBS reports.

Elsewhere, investigators are still working to determine how the eight died, as families mourn the dead and concertgoers recount their horror and confusion.

Authorities plan to use videos, witness interviews and a review of concert procedures to figure out what went wrong during Scott’s performance.

“I’m honestly just devastated and I could never imagine anything like this just happening,” he said in his first statement since the tragedy.

Billy Nasser, 24, said about 15 minutes into Scott’s set, things got “really crazy” and people began crushing one another. He said he “was picking people up and trying to drag them out”.

Mr Nasser said he found a concertgoer on the ground.

“I picked him up. People were stepping on him. People were like stomping, and I picked his head up and I looked at his eyes, and his eyes were just white, rolled back to the back of his head,” he said.

The dead, according to friends and family members, included a 14-year-old high school student; a 16-year-old girl who loved dancing; and a 21-year-old engineering student.

Houston officials did not immediately release their names or the cause of death.

Thirteen people remained hospitalised on Sunday. Their conditions were not disclosed. More than 300 were treated at a field hospital at the concert.

-with AAP

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