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Hillsborough Disaster Verdict


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Tragic a person made a mistake resulting in this horror.

Also tragic it's taken this long to get some sort of closure.

It was also the lies and conspiracy that followed that must have compounded the grief of those who lost loved ones.

Kelvin McKenzie of the Sun should be eviscerated for the role of that despicable rag.

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I'm actually saddened by this verdict. Not that I'm denying there was a cover up and an attempt to pervert the course of justice, just that I don't think these deaths were down to any individual.

The fact is that Hillsborough was a death trap - an accident waiting to happen. You've got a poorly designed stadium, located badly, with too few turnstyles, that has been modified with high perimeter fencing designed to keep spectators in pens rather than to allow them the escape route onto the trackside and onto the pitch. Add to that factors like many of the fans turning up too close to kick off, the surging and swelling of fans, the referee's reluctance to delay kick off, and the reality that a number of fans in the area had turned up without tickets hoping to either buy one off a fellow supporter at the ground, or hoping to manage to sneak in if the opportunity arose and you've got all the ingredients for the disaster that ultimately happened here. Add that to the fact that there had been previous incidents where lessons clearly weren't learned and it all becomes a tragic waste of life.

If only there had been appropriate escape routes onto the pitch. If only the majority of fans had turned up an hour before kick off. If only the stadium had been all seated with a reduced capacity as it is today. If only there had been an appropriate number of stewards to divert fans from the overcrowded pen, into the one next door no-one would have lost their life and we wouldn't have been spending £millions in taxpayers money trying to find a scapegoat.

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I'm actually saddened by this verdict. Not that I'm denying there was a cover up and an attempt to pervert the course of justice, just that I don't think these deaths were down to any individual.

The fact is that Hillsborough was a death trap - an accident waiting to happen. You've got a poorly designed stadium, located badly, with too few turnstyles, that has been modified with high perimeter fencing designed to keep spectators in pens rather than to allow them the escape route onto the trackside and onto the pitch. Add to that factors like many of the fans turning up too close to kick off, the surging and swelling of fans, the referee's reluctance to delay kick off, and the reality that a number of fans in the area had turned up without tickets hoping to either buy one off a fellow supporter at the ground, or hoping to manage to sneak in if the opportunity arose and you've got all the ingredients for the disaster that ultimately happened here. Add that to the fact that there had been previous incidents where lessons clearly weren't learned and it all becomes a tragic waste of life.

If only there had been appropriate escape routes onto the pitch. If only the majority of fans had turned up an hour before kick off. If only the stadium had been all seated with a reduced capacity as it is today. If only there had been an appropriate number of stewards to divert fans from the overcrowded pen, into the one next door no-one would have lost their life and we wouldn't have been spending £millions in taxpayers money trying to find a scapegoat.

Whilst I hear what you say, and yes the ground was an accident, so were many stadiums in those days, there were decisions that were taken that should have been avoided. Also agree to the pound of flesh analogy .

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Tony is the troll. My post was on topic and an expression of my honestly held point of view. Tony is the one attempting to make a personal attack taking the discussion off topic and sadly he's managing it.

I'll be interested to see what individuals get thrown up in the ensuing witch hunt off that back of todays verdict and whether anyone will actually find them guilty in the long run.

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Whilst I hear what you say, and yes the ground was an accident, so were many stadiums in those days, there were decisions that were taken that should have been avoided. Also agree to the pound of flesh analogy .

Yep, but each decision was a reaction to a situation that was developing. For example opening the gates to alleviate a crush outside the stadium causing fans to rush up the slope and into the first pen has often been criticised as a poor decision, but what if the gates weren't opened? Would the deaths have happened outside the stadium instead?

The fact is that the lessons learned from Hillsborough have since been acted upon and the improvement in fan safety has increased dramatically as a result. The biggest improvement has been in terms of facilities. We now have grounds where there are sufficient numbers of turnstyles in all seater stadia where matches that are going to be close to capacity are all ticket and where each ticket allocates a specific section of the ground. We also tend not to enclose fans behind fences, and where clubs do the fences have been designed with escape in mind. Indeed the improvement in facilities has meant that many clubs now have reduced policing at every match and instead there is a reliance put on far cheaper to hire stewards.

There will be a witch hunt against certain police officers that will happen now. Whilst some of them were obviously guilty of perverting the course of justice - I don't think any of them were guilty of killing anyone.

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Stadium design was at fault. Sheffield Wednesday were at fault. The fans died because of crushing in the central pens. The behaviour of the fans was not a factor in the deaths. The actions of the police, specifically opening gates to allow a flood of fans to rush in, and then compound that by not having anyone guide them to the end pens resulted in 96 fans being unlawfully killed.

Why did it take 27 years to come to conclusions that were pretty damn clear about a fortnight after the disaster?

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