200 injured as stand collapses in football match in India

TEHRAN, Mar. 21 (MNA) – More than 200 people were injured with some in critical condition after a temporary stand collapsed during a football match at a sports ground in Kerala's Malappuram district in India on Saturday, according to reports.

Dramatic footage of the incident shows the moment when the temporary seating gave way, with a large floodlight also falling on the pitch and appearing to strike spectators as they attempted to scramble to safety, RT reported.

Fans from the opposite side of the pitch can be seen in the brief footage running onto the field in a bid to give assistance to those who were injured, as reported by local outlet ABP Live.

The collapse occurred in the Poongod stadium where the final of the All India Sevens Football Tournament was being played.

Local media also suggested that the attendance in the temporary stand had exceeded the recommended seating capacity, with another publication, Matrubhumi, reporting that police said 8,000 fans had gathered at the stadium to watch the match.

It is thought that as many as 3,000 fans were seated in the temporary stand before its collapse – a figure above the recommended capacity.

The accident happened just before kick-off in the final game of the tournament between United FC Nellikuth and Royal Travel Kozhikode.

Per Matrubhumi, local police have indicated that organizers of the event could face severe punishment if they are found to have knowingly disregarded safety measures before the stand collapsed.

Dozens of injured fans are said to be receiving treatment at the Manjeri Medical College and Hospital, with others who didn't suffer severe injuries treated on the pitch. 

It was also reported that children are among those to have been injured.

A preliminary investigation found that rainfall had made the stand less secure, India Ahead News reported a police official as saying.

The broadcaster said that people had suffered leg fractures and spinal injuries.

ZZ/PR

News Code 185031

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