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Danish Police: Concert Security OK

July 22, 2000

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) _ Police have ruled that the deaths of nine people in a crush at a rock festival featuring the band Pearl Jam was a freak accident and safety precautions were sufficient.

Eight young men died at the scene and another died of his injuries a few days later as fans crowded in to hear the American band June 30 at the Roskilde Festival.

The victims were from Denmark, Sweden, Germany, the Netherlands and Australia.

After a three-week investigation, police decided the festival’s organizers were not responsible for their deaths, Police Chief Constable Uffe Kornerup said this week. The final report was delivered to the Justice and Culture ministries Monday, as is standard procedure, and no further action was expected.

Slippery mud due to heavy rains worsened the situation at the outdoor festival in Roskilde, 25 miles west of Copenhagen, Kornerup said. About 74,000 tickets had been sold for the day’s performances.

Security measures included physical barriers designed to prevent overcrowding.

``It’s normal that young people push and squeeze at rock concerts, but here it sadly developed in a catastrophic way,″ Kornerup said .

It was the first major accident at the four-day festival, which was first held in 1971 and was inspired by the 1969 Woodstock Festival in upstate New York.

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