A very cold TOP winter cantus
After the winter cantus on Thursday evening, dozens of students were unable to retrieve their coats. When they were then sent outside, where the temperature was three degrees below Celsius, all hell broke loose. The TOP-organization was nowhere to be found.
The cloakroom staff had absolutely no control over the situation. Long rows were forming and the organization decided that a new row should be formed outside, a process that was guided by security in a rather coarse manner. That’s when things escalated. Security had to intervene harshly to ensure that no one would drown in the sea of students that wanted to get their coat back. Donny Batenburg, who was also waiting for his coat, saw people fainting and being dragged away by security. After the entire fiasco, many students were left with wrong coats or no coat at all. The TOP-organization, which had disappeared mysteriously on the night itself, organized a pick up session on Friday, where people were able to pick up their coats.
It was unclear why the organization decided to send everybody outside. Many students were wearing nothing but a t-shirt and feared they might freeze to death. The mood amongst the once cheerful students turned grim. Turmoil arose and one student became so frustrated that they smashed a window. Attempts to sneak inside to warm up where followed by harsh behavior from security, who said they were “simply following orders from the organization”. However, when people started crying and begging the security to let them in, they decided to ignore the orders from the organization after all and people were let in.
TOP chairman Mike van der Wouw explained the situation as follows: “A number of people did not receive their coat, after which they did not walk away from the cloak room. This prevented new people from being helped and the amount of people grew bigger and bigger. People started pushing and pulling and security was unable to control the situation. Because of security reasons, some precautions were taken in consultation with security, to ensure that the process would be as smooth as possible.”
Half of the TOP organization was present, according to Van der Wouw, three of whom where helping out in the cloak room. In the end, the majority of the students had to stand in the freezing cold for over one and a half hour.