Fifteen people were injured by lightning two seriously on Saturday afternoon in Azerailles, Meurthe-et-Moselle where the 6th edition of the Musique du Vieux Canal festival was being held.
“The lightning struck at several places during the music festival of Musique du Vieux Canal in Azerailles” south of Nancy. The stormy episode occurred at about 16 pm and took the public “by surprise” , said the prefecture in a statement.
Two people, a woman of about sixty years and a 44 year old man were seriously injured. The victims were “directly affected by lightning and mainly suffering burns”, they said.
They were supported by the festival’s rescue center, and evacuated to hospitals in Brabois, Luneville and Saint-Die.
Two children, aged ten years were nearby. These, shocked, were supported by rescue services.
Lightning strikes tent
“The sub-prefect of Luneville went on site Saturday afternoon to coordinate the emergency action”, said the prefecture of the department in a statement.
According to local media, lightning struck a tent under which a refugee was part of the audience, a tent that was itself beneath a tree. Meteo France had issued on Saturday no warning bulletin for the department, on risk of thunderstorms, according to the prefecture.
The Old Canal Music Festival, scheduled to open Saturday at 5.45pm and 9 groups were scheduled to perform on Saturday evening, according to the festival site.
When lightning struck, families were on the festival site which had already opened its doors for a fair for the young and the old with circus activities and shows for the youngest.
All concerts were canceled by decision of the organizers and the Town Hall, according to local press. Among the expected artists were the Nantes electro band “Pony Pony Run Run” and the acoustic duo Lorraine “Dyson Project.”