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Coachella, Ultra, Tortuga

What do Fort Lauderdale’s Tortuga Music Festival, Miami’s Ultra Music Festival and Coachella all have in common?

The season for music festivals is approaching quickly. Miami’s Ultra starts it off on March 27, 2015, followed by both Tortuga in Fort Lauderdale and Coachella on April 11, 2015. The common theme shared by these music festivals is great music listened to by thousands of people attending the festivals. However, when you throw in a few mosh pits, alcohol, and people vying for the best place to listen to the music, you have the ingredients to create some dangerous situations.

Just last year a security guard was seriously injured at Ultra after being trampled by a crowd that stormed the fences that surrounded the festival. The accident happened as hundreds of the festival’s attendees were pushing and leaning on a fence. Once the fence fell, it trapped the security guard underneath as the hundreds of people ran over the fence into the festival. The security guard suffered head trauma and a broken leg. At Coachella, an employee of the Festival that was responsible for directing traffic was hit and killed by a driver suspected of being under the influence of drugs.

The sheer number of people attending these concerts make it very difficult to ensure the safety of all the attendees. Miami’s Ultra tops the attendance list with approximately 330,000 people attending over a three day period. Coachella’s attendance exceeds 180,000 over six days, and Fort Lauderdale’s Tortuga festival adds another 30,000-40,000 people for the weekend. With that many people crammed into one area, accident and injuries are inevitable.

The promoters of the events take extensive precautions ahead of the festivals to minimize dangerous conditions being created. The promoters will involve state and local law enforcement as much as a year in advance, along with security experts, to try and design an event that keeps accidents and injuries to a minimum.

The promoters of all three events – Ultra, Tortuga and Coachella – owe a duty to their concert attendees to maintain the festival area in a reasonably safe condition, and to warn attendees of dangerous conditions that the promoter, or their employees knew about, or should have known about. All three festivals employ hundreds of employees and volunteers who are trained to look for dangerous conditions. But the accidents and injuries continue to happen.

Be mindful of your surroundings at these events, and the people around you that may be getting carried away. Report people to security personnel that may be getting too rowdy. And if you’re injured at one of these festivals, consult with an accident/injury attorney – make sure you protect you and your family’s rights.


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