According to reports on September 20, the Seoul Metro Line No. 2 recently saw a dangerous stampede situation, sprouting from the public’s fear of recurring knife attacks in the city.
On September 6, commuters were thrown into a frenzy when a man was seen shoving people and plunging through a crowded train. The incident occurred at Euljiro 4-ga Station at around 8:22 a.m. The train was packed due to the morning rush hour.
The debacle was caught on security cameras at the subway station and inside the vehicle. The Seoul Jungbu Police Station obtained the footage to identify the suspect, who was caught on tape forcefully pushing through the passengers while striding across the train aisle. He was dressed in a black hoodie, his face covered with a mask.
The man’s attire and actions immediately sent a wave of panic among the passengers. As people scattered to exit the vehicle and run away, a stampede ensued inside and toward the station’s exit.
South Korea has been facing the persistent anxiety of surging public attacks for the past few months. It started with a random knife rampage at Sillim station on July 21, killing one and injuring three. Since then, more attacks have followed suit, and there have been multiple cases of individuals threatening to carry out similar attacks in public places. Various places in the country have been alerted of attacks since then, sending the public into a prolonged state of panic.
The chaos in the Seoul subway reportedly caused twenty-one people to be injured. Train operations were also halted temporarily, causing delays. The police apprehended the suspect near his Seoul residency on September 19, and he is facing charges of injury from violence and interference with business operations.
However, the suspect denied any intention of harming anybody on the subway. During questioning, he reportedly stated that he was merely trying to walk through the crowd when the chaos unfolded. According to the police, the suspect has a history of mental disorder.