Forty-six concertgoers, ages 18 to 30, were transported to hospital from Canada’s largest EDM event, Live Nation’s Digital Dreams Music Festival in Toronto over the weekend. Most suffered from drug and alcohol-related illnesses, according to Emergency Medical Services. More than 70,000 people attended what the 13th Annual Toronto Nightclub Awards voted “Party of the Year” in 2013.
“Out of the over 100 patients we treated at that location each day paramedics were able to stabilize about 75 patients at the scene and deemed 23 others as needing further hospital care. This included one patient in life threatening condition,” EMS media liaison Kim McKinnon told Billboard in an email.
McKinnon said 23 patients were transported to hospital each day, totalling 46.
“Because of the large amount of patients transported and based on their condition the patients were transported to several downtown hospitals. Once the patients are turned over to the emergency room staff we no longer track their progress so I can't speak to their status after paramedics were no longer overseeing their care.”
Now in its third year, Bud Light Digital Dreams 2014 — put on by Live Nation Canada’s EDM division Electronic Nation Canada — was held at The Flats by Lake Ontario on the grounds of Ontario Place June 28 and 29. The event had close to 70 acts on four stages, including Tiesto, Justice, Paul Oakenfold, Luciano, Dimitri Vegas, and Like Mike, Deep Dish, Eric Prydz, The Crystal Method, Flux Pavilion and Art Department.
After selling-out 50,000 tickets in 2013, double that of its inaugural year, Electronic Nation expanded the site to accommodate up to 80,000 attendees, according to a June 27 press release.
“The medical emergencies we treated at this event are preventable if attendees inform themselves of the dangers,” added McKinnon. “I realize this may be obvious, but the consequences are serious. Overdosing, overconsuming alcohol and other substances and even mixing the two can lead to dangerous and even life threatening medical conditions that have to be treated by paramedics and emergency physicians.
“This behaviour can also lead to behaviour that can result in traumatic injuries like falls for example when people take risks they would not normally take. At Toronto EMS we see the effects of these risky choices too often.”
CORRECTION 7/2: 23 people each day were hospitalized, totaling 46 – not 23 total as originally reported.