Shanghai Stampede Survivors Recall Nightmare

Two people hug each other as they wait for information about their loved ones who had been taken to the Shanghai No. 1 People’s Hospital after the tragedy on the Bund. It is believed seven of the injured have not yet been identified — Liu Xingzhe.

Shanghai, Jan. 2 2015, /Shanghia Daily/ — Some still in shock, and some still not knowing the fate of their loved ones, witnesses to the New Year’s Eve tragedy told Shanghai Daily of their experiences at a celebration that turned into their worst nightmare.

Yu: squeezed almost out of breath

“It was too crowded to make a turn and we felt squeezed almost out of breath standing in the crowd,” said a woman surnamed Yu. “There were people screaming and shouting — Police, help me.” Many fell over and people started trampling on one another, said Yu.

“When escorting my friend to the hospital, I saw four others in the ambulance, all badly injured,” she said.

Zuo Zhijian: you can’t imagine this

“You can’t imagine this: you are suspended over the ground. Someone behind you grabs your hair to stand up. Right there in front of you, a girl begs you to save her life and says she is dying, while another just lies motionless,” said an online post by local journalist Zuo Zhijian. “Two dozen people were lying on the ground with bags, cellphones, shoes and scarves scattered around.”

Feng: some stepped on others

A student surnamed Feng told Shanghai Daily how he saw the tragedy unfold. “A tourist suddenly fell down in the crowds of people squeezing with each other on a few steps and brought down a group of others who were trying to go down. Some had to step on other fallen people to pull out their friends from the pile of people.”

Sister: “Mom, Li Na is gone”

Li Na’s older sister was in tears as she phone her mother to tell Li, 21, was among the dead at the Huangpu hospital.

“Mom, Li Na is gone,” she cried as people tried to comfort her.
An official with the company where the sisters worked said they had arranged to bring family members from their home in central China to the city.

Zong Zhao: pushed forward

Zong Zhao could not stop weeping when police told him his friend was dead. Zong and Li Xiang had been at Xiamen University together and were work colleagues.

“It was around 11:40pm. We were pushed forward by a huge crowd behind us. We didn’t want to move forward toward the riverfront area, but had no choice. Suddenly, a crowd from the front began to push us back. We fell, and we were among the people buried.”

Li Chenglong: girlfriend in hospital

Li Chenglong was among the people waiting for news at Changzheng Hospital, where his girlfriend had been taken there.

“The crowds in front of us suddenly started to move back, and pushed us back to the steps leading to the platform. It was on the steps that a large number of people fell down.”

Li said that he became separated from his girlfriend, Yang Jiafei, because of the crowds but he was aware that she was among those who were pushed down at the bottom of the steps.

Yu Ping: we were stuck

Luo Dali, 24, is in Shanghai No. 1 People’s Hospital but her condition is not yet known, her friend Yu Ping said.
They walked to the Bund area around 11:30pm with several colleagues. The Bund was packed and they found themselves being pushed up steps toward Chen Yi Square.

“Police told us to go back, but we couldn’t as many people are pushing us forward from the back. We were stuck and couldn’t move. Around 15 minutes later, people started to faint and fall.”

Chang Lei: my daughter is safe

Chang Lei said he was thankful his 5-year-old daughter was safe.

He had taken the girl to see the celebrations and they were at the bottom of the step when people above started to fall. He managed to turn around and stretch out his arms to make sure his daughter was unhurt.

“I shouted to a nearby policeman, asking him to help my daughter out. He did it and held her for about 15 minutes until I was released as people above were gradually rescued,” he said.