Springfest 2017 was canceled Saturday night after crowds exceeded maximum capacity, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department. Department of Public Safety officers arrived on scene soon after the show’s cancellation to form a skirmish line.
There were no life-threatening injuries, but at least one person was transported to the hospital, according to an LAFD statement.
Hip-hop group Migos had begun performing their second song of the night, after their set had already been delayed for more than 30 minutes. One of the members of Migos’ team urged crowd members to step back and stop pushing one another and to leave the crowd area if they were in need of medical attention.
Rae Sremmurd, the headliner of the event, did not take the stage due to the event’s cancellation.
USC Concerts Committee explained the decision in the Springfest 2017 Facebook event page.
“The decision to end Springfest early stemmed from a unanimous decision to keep students’ safety as our top priority,” it wrote. “While we are disappointed the event ended early, there was no other option. Thanks to everyone that came through; we appreciate your patience.”
Students left on their own and were escorted by security personnel, according to the Department of Public Safety.
Grecia Vega, a sophomore majoring in accounting, said she was in the front of the crowd when people began to lose consciousness.
“People just started passing out in my friend’s arms and suffocating,” Vega said. “We were trying to get people’s attention — no one was paying attention.”
Vega said she had arrived early to beat the crowd, but once the concert started she said she felt unsafe.
“It was super scary,” Vega said. “I thought people were going to stampede and that someone was going to die. A concert is not worth that.”
Trevor Nielsen, a junior majoring in electrical engineering, was part of the crowd during Migos’ set and witnessed the concert shutting down. He said that ultimately the show’s cancellation was due to poor planning that could have amounted to audience members getting hurt.
“Concerts Committee didn’t anticipate how large the crowd would be for Rae Sremmurd and Migos on the same night,” Nielsen said. “Honestly, the University made the right call shutting it down.”
This post has been updated to include statements from DPS, LAFD and USC Concerts Committee.
Allen Pham and Trevor Sochocki contributed to this report.
Correction: A previous version of this article stated that the DPS riot squad was on the scene. There were no DPS or Los Angeles Police Department riot squads. DPS and LAPD officers were present in helmets and prepared to form a skirmish line. The Daily Trojan regrets the error.