UPDATES WITH CANCELLATION OF THE FESTIVAL
By Alyssa McMurtry
OVIEDO, Spain (AA) – A 22-year-old man was killed and 40 people injured early Saturday morning when strong winds hit the Medusa music festival in the Spanish region of Valencia.
Police are investigating the exact circumstances behind the death, but authorities report that the man was hit by part of the concert stage that was torn off by the wind.
The electronic music festival’s entrance and exit also collapsed due to weather conditions, while videos showed people’s tents nearly blowing away and damage to other structures.
The Spanish meteorological agency, AEMET, recorded wind gusts stronger than 80km per hour (50 mph) in the area just after 4 a.m. local time (0100GMT).
Meteorologists attributed the winds to a heat burst, a rare meteorological event caused by a sudden drop in humidity and an increase in temperatures. It produced strong winds across the Valencia coast.
Organizers of the Medusa music festivals said the winds caught them off guard and that the festival was evacuated immediately after the danger was perceived.
Later that afternoon, organizers announced that the festival, which was set to run from Wednesday through Monday and attract 320,000 people, will not continue after the tragedy.
Electronic music stars David Guetta, Afrojack and Steve Aoki were headlining the festival.