Two attendees have died after attending hardstyle festival Defqon.1 over the weekend in Sydney. Three people are still in critical condition and another 700 more sought medical attention for drug related issues. Some 30,000 attended the festival on Saturday, September 15 at the Sydney International Regatta Centre.
Police say a 23-year-old man and a 21-year-old woman died after being transported to nearby Nepean Hospital.
The government is now looking to shut down Defqon in Sydney and New South Wales as a result of this and past deaths at the festival. One person died at the festival in 2015 and another in 2013.
State premier Gladys Berejiklian called the deaths “absolutely tragic” and said via Billboard, “I never want to see this event held in Sydney or New South Wales ever again -- we will do everything we can to shut this down.” She added, "I don't want to see this ever happen again -- young lives lost for no reason."
The organizers say they are cooperating with authorities and are saddened by the deaths at their festival.
“The organizers of Defqon.1 Australia are deeply saddened by the tragic passing of two of their patrons at Nepean Hospital after attending the festival last night and would like to convey their sincerest condolences to their families and friends,” a statement reads via news.com.au.
“Thoughts and prayers are also with the young man and woman who are still in a critical condition. We are disappointed at the number of reported drug related incidents, we have a zero-tolerance policy in relation to drug use at the festival.”
This will ignite the debate once again about why we need to have pill testing more widely available at festivals. Fans won’t test at home or believe their drugs are good. Then if they buy them in the festival, it could be very sketchy stuff. Mix that with hot weather, not enough water and a lot of exercise and tragic things happen.