Compiled by Cheng Lita, Sothea Ines and Chan Sovannara
What have you heard? What do you know?
Hong Putheara, 21-year-old senior at the Royal University of Phnom Penh
“Since people at the water festival were mainly from the provinces, they didn’t know that the bridge was a suspension bridge. When the bridge began to swing, people got confused and thought the bridge was falling down. Everyone tried to get of the bridge at the same time and their bodies became twisted together, which made it much more difficult for police to help once they arrived.”
Chhim Kosal Seryboth, 17-year-old student at Teok Thlar high school
“I think people over there were just having a lot fun, they may have joked about the bridge is broken, and then people started to push from the back of the crowd toward the middle as they tried to cross the bridge.”
Yean Sokhum, 24-year-old senior at Phnom Penh International University
“The government did not have any predetermined plan to react to this disaster immediately after it happened. I think if there were police to help the numbers of dead and injured wouldn’t be so high. We know the Water Festival attracts many people. This kind of accident could have happened anywhere. “
Nob Chamrong, 19-year-old sophomore at the University of Health and Sciences
“The deaths were caused by a lack of Oxygen because it was so crowded that people had no space to breathe and for a long time there was no intervention from authorities. Regardless, the main problem was that people panicked and only thought about their own survival.”
Sreng Seng Hong, 23-year-old senior at the Royal University of Law and Economics
“The impact on people’s view of Koh Pich depends on their beliefs. But, the next generation, who do not know about this disaster, will enjoy the stuff on the Island, for it is a beautiful place thank to it is artificial and creative place.”
Choun Rasmey, 18-year-old student at Sisowat high school.
“I believe that Koh Pich should close that bridge to avoid other tragedy happen again. After the tragedy, people will still go to Koh Pich but less than before the stampede. The wedding parties will still go on over there as well but they won’t have many guests at all. “