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Railing collapses at FedEx Field, causing fans to fall and narrowly miss Eagles’ Jalen Hurts

(Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)
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A railing along the north tunnel at FedEx Field collapsed Sunday, sending multiple fans toppling to the ground and nearly taking out Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts as he walked off the field.

The incident happened following the Washington Football Team’s 20-16 loss to the Eagles, after most players had left the field and many fans had exited the stadium. Hurts, who had just completed on-field interviews, was headed back toward the visitors’ locker room when a crowd of Eagles fans awaited him alongside the tunnel railing.

“The Washington Football Team is aware of an incident in the North Field Tunnel following today’s game,” the team said in a statement. “To our knowledge, everyone involved was offered onsite medical evaluation and left the stadium of their own accord. We’re very glad no one appears to have been seriously injured. The safety of our fans and guests is of the utmost importance and we are looking into what occurred.”

According to a Washington team spokesperson, the area where the railing collapsed is the stadium’s ADA-accessible section, which is designed to hold up to six wheelchairs and six companions but is not built to carry a full load of fans. The team did not address why so many fans were in the section before the railing collapsed.

Hurts sidestepped the railing and the handful of fans who fell to the ground. He stayed to help up those who fell — and then stayed longer as several corralled him for hugs and photos.

“I’m just happy everybody is safe from it,” Hurts told reporters after the game. “It is crazy. It is crazy stuff right there. That was a really dangerous situation. I’m just so happy that everybody bounced back from it. Passionate Eagles fans. I love it.”

The incident is the latest of many at FedEx Field this season.

During the opener against the Los Angeles Chargers in September, a pipe burst in the stadium, creating a waterfall into the stands. Fans in a video that made the rounds on social media said it was sewage. The stadium’s official Twitter account claimed afterward that it was rainwater from a storage tank, and the affected fans were moved to a suite for the rest of the game.

During Washington’s Monday night win over the Seattle Seahawks in Week 12, the sprinklers inside a suite went off, prompting another statement from a team spokesperson who assured the water was not sewage.

And for the early part of the season, the steam machine used during Washington’s player introductions created a thick cloud above the tunnel that made it difficult for players to navigate their way to the field. The steam became a story unto itself and again warranted input from a team spokesperson, who told the Washington Times that the overflow was because of humidity and that the team would make alterations to reduce the steam.

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