25 hurt when floor collapses at massive house party in Athens

There were close to 500 people squeezed into a house party on Magnolia Bluff Drive early Friday morning when the floor collapsed, sending partiers crashing into the basement, a captain for the Athens-Clarke County Fire and Emergency Services said.

Twnety-five people were treated on the scene with cuts and scratches, but no one was seriously injured, he said.

"These folks should consider themselves fortunate," said Captain Nate Moss. "We are grateful that this unexpected event didn't turn out any worse than it did."

The house party was in a neighborhood not far from University of Georgia’s main campus. Clayton Harden, a senior at UGA who lives a few doors down, said he was woken up by the loud boom of the floor crashing down.

Credit: Athens-Clarke County Fire and Emergency Services

"I just watched people like leave in stretchers from my window and like everybody kind of scattered out," Harden recalled. "People were just kind of checking on each other."

Devin Jones, another UGA student who lives on the next street over, said he saw students break into the basement door to help free trapped partiers.

"I thought people were fighting," Jones said, "But they were actually trying to break into that door to get people out from underneath the floor."

Credit: Athens-Clarke County Fire and Emergency Services

Firefighters said none of the 25 people who were injured were taken by medics to the hospital. They said several of them had planned to drive themselves or have a friend take them.

Jones said his roommate jumped in to help those who had escaped from the basement.

"Sean, my roommate, was helping people out of the house and what not, and we were just giving them ice because like, that’s really all we could do," he said.

Credit: Athens-Clarke County Fire and Emergency Services

Photos released by Athens-Clarke County Fire and Emergency Services show the collapse. From the outside, the brick foundation of the house was visibly buckled.

Harden said that the neighborhood definitely has its share of parties, being so close to campus, but this may have been the largest he has seen.

"There’s been some pretty big parties in this neighborhood, but that was definitely probably the biggest." 

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