(CNN)Here is a look at the Hillsborough Disaster, a 1989 tragedy at a British soccer stadium. Overcrowding in the stands led to the deaths of 96 fans in a crush. Another 162 were hospitalized with injuries. It was the worst sports disaster in British history, according to the BBC.
Hillsborough Stadium Disaster Fast Facts
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On April 15, 1989, more than 50,000 people gathered at the Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield, England, for the FA Cup Semi-Final football (soccer) match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest. In order to relieve a bottleneck of Liverpool fans trying to enter the venue before kickoff, police opened an exit gate and people rushed to get inside. More than 3,000 fans were funneled into a standing-room-only area with a safe capacity of just 1,600. The obvious crush in the stands prompted organizers to stop the game after six minutes.
Police initially concluded the crush was an attempt by rowdy fans to surge onto the field, according to the Taylor Interim Report, a 1989 government investigation led by Justice Peter Taylor. As officers approached the stands, it became apparent people were suffocating and trying to escape by climbing the fence.
The Taylor Interim Report describes the scene: "The dead, the dying and the desperate became interwoven in the sump at the front of the pens, especially by the gates. Those with strength left clambered over others submerged in the human heap and tried to climb out over the fence...The victims were blue...incontinent; their mouths open, vomiting; their eyes staring. A pile of dead bodies lay and grew outside gate 3."
The emergency response was slow, according to the Hillsborough Independent Panel, a 2012 follow-up investigation. The problems were rooted in poor communication between police and ambulance dispatchers, according to the panel.
Fans tried to help each other by tearing up pieces of advertising hoardings, creating improvised stretchers and carrying injured spectators away from the throngs, according to the Taylor Interim Report. People who had no first aid training attempted to revive the fallen. From the report: "Mouth to mouth respiration and cardiac massage were applied by the skilled and the unskilled but usually in vain. Those capable of survival mostly came round of their own accord. The rest were mostly doomed before they could be brought out and treated." It took nearly 30 minutes for organizers to call for doctors and nurses via the public address system.
South Yorkshire Police Supervisor David D