The good times have gone bad quickly at a number of music shows this summer.
A man had his fingertip bitten off at BeyoncÉ and Jay Z's On the Run tour stop in
An 18-year-old man was charged with raping a 17-year-old girl on a crowded lawn at Keith Urban's
Last weekend, two died at Mad Decent Block Party, an EDM event in
Is it coincidence, or is a lack of security and safety regulations?
"We're talking about peak concert season, millions of people going to shows -- safety is always a paramount concern, but you can't completely, 100% contain stupid behavior," says
Despite best efforts to control what goes on inside a venue -- whether that means upping security staff, employing drug-sniffing dogs or capping alcohol purchases -- it's impossible to prevent all dangerous behavior, says
"How is a promoter supposed to stop a drug overdose? Even strip and full-body cavity searches couldn't stop someone from ingesting drugs just before they come in," he says. "The negligence would be if the promoter didn't provide adequate emergency medical (services) on site."
But promoters and city officials may bear some of the blame for seeking to maximize profits, says
"There's so much money involved (with events), and cities and communities are so desperate for money," he says. "Promoters know that, artists know that, and they're cutting corners more than they ever did before," with minimal security staffing and unlimited alcohol sales.
Electric Daisy Carnival, the Las Vegas EDM mega-fest, brought more than
"It's becoming acceptable that people are injured or die at these events. It's not an outrage," says Wertheimer. "Unless it turns into something substantial, it's business as usual."
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