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‘People were running for their lives’ - Norwich City fan involved in ‘terrifying’ World Cup stampede

PUBLISHED: 09:21 11 July 2018 | UPDATED: 17:35 26 March 2020

Andrew and Becky Powles, pictured in Berlin, were caught up in a stampede in Nice. Picture: POWLES FAMILY

Andrew and Becky Powles, pictured in Berlin, were caught up in a stampede in Nice. Picture: POWLES FAMILY

Powles family

A Norwich City fan has been caught up in a “terrifying” stampede which broke out in Nice last night amid France’s win over Belgium in the World Cup semi-final.

Andrew Powles, from Bury St Edmunds, and his wife Becky, were watching the match on the outskirts of the old town square when crowds panicked after firecrackers were let off.

Mr Powles, a lecturer at West Suffolk College, said “hundreds of people started stampeding towards us pushing over tables and breaking glasses”.

“It was a pretty scary experience,” he added.

“I’ve never witnessed anything like it before.

“People were literally running for their lives over everything in their way.”

Mr Powles, who is returning to the UK today, said it was one of the most “terrifying” moments the couple had experienced.

Some 27 football fans are reported to have been injured in the stampede, which broke out moments before the final whistle was blown in France’s 1-0 win against Belgium.

“There was a crowd surge after firecrackers were detonated,” Jean-Gabriel Delacroix from the city prefecture told Reuters.

“Most of the injuries are glass cuts and bruising picked up when people fell.”

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