Millions of Muslims trooped to Mecca for pilgrimage, or hajj to celebrate Eid al-Adha, the holiest day in the Muslim calendar. The accident occurred around 9.10 a.m. at the intersection of two roads in Mina, causing panic and a stampede that led to the deaths.
Already, two medical centers have been opened near the accident area to treat the injured. Those in critical conditions have been rushed to several hospitals, and the operation to look for more injuries and deaths is still on.
This is not the first time such case has been reported, in 2006, another stampede occurred in the same area claiming more than 370 people. In 2001, a stampede in the same area killed around 35 people; in 1998.In 1997, at least 340 pilgrims were killed in a fire in Mina set off by high winds.
Clearly, the town has claimed more than 5000 lives in less than 15 years, which should send warning signals for the pilgrims who intend to visit the area in years to come.