Staying Safe At Music Festivals
This weekend, Ultra music festival returns to Miami! While Miami citizens curse the crazy traffic and the pounding music, thousands of festival-goers will gather to listen to popular electronic and dance artists like Major Lazer, David Guetta, Zedd, and Tiesto. Ultra is the pinnacle of festival culture, complete with carefree dancing, happy camaraderie, and sometimes, rampant drug use.
Last year, 67 people were arrested during the festival, including 15 arrests for the possession of MDMA, a popular festival drug. Also last year, a University of Miami died following the debauchery at Ultra, with heavy drug use likely playing a major role. A security guard is also suing the festival after a rowdy crowd pushed over a barrier, seriously injuring her.
Ultra isn’t the only festival to be plagued with death, injuries, and legal problems. At Tampa Bay’s own Sunset Music Festival, two young adults died last year and dozens more were hospitalized.
By combining drugs, alcohol, the outdoors, and mass amounts of people, music festivals like Ultra have the potential to become very dangerous very quickly. Thankfully, a little preparation and a lot of responsible choices can ensure that any outdoor music festival goes smoothly.
Music Festival Tips
- Slather on some sunscreen. In the excitement of arriving at the festival, it’s easy to forget to apply a healthy amount of sunscreen, but don’t forget. Reapply every few hours. Wear a hat or bandana to protect your head and scalp, and don’t forget sunglasses.
- Stay hydrated. Dehydration is serious, and passing out will definitely wreck the fun. Don’t rely on alcohol alone.
- Practice consent. Remember that it’s always okay to say no, and that another other than “yes” is not consent.
- Have a buddy system. This may seem juvenile, but having a buddy is truly important. Memorize a friend’s phone number in case you lose your phone, and never leave an area without them.
- If you are staying at a campsite alone, introduce yourself to your neighbors. They will look out for you, and you can do the same for them.
- Don’t take any drugs that anyone offers you, even if they seem fun and enticing. You don’t know what is in them, or what kind of reaction you might have. Plus, drugs are illegal!
- If you have been doing drugs, or if a friend has been doing drugs, do not hesitate to get any necessary medical attention out of fear of punishment or arrest. Your life should be the most important thing, and you can worry about getting in trouble later. Some states have Good Samaritan laws which protect people who call for help during a drug situation.
- Be considerate of everyone else, from officials to your fellow concert-goers.
- Be smart, stay safe, and have fun!
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