Good news for LA dance music fans – the city isn’t going after your events.
After the tragic deaths at HARD Summer 2015 that led to a general crackdown on LA-area events, the county assembled a task force to determine better ways to ensure the safety of festival goers. HARD Events/Live Nation cancelled a scheduled show in September, but kept their massive Day of the Dead festival on Halloween even though they decreased the amount of attendees while raising the age limit to 21+. During that time, Los Angeles County assessed the risks of these types of concerts, which many feared would lead to a ban on all future dance music events on public land like DOTD and HARD Summer.
But the final recommendations from the Electric Music Task Force chose a much fairer route than a ban. Instead, their list of 55 ideas included suggestions like raising the minimum age for entry to 18 for all shows, more water stations, 4 police officers for every 1000 attendees, Amnesty boxes at entrances, and educational materials to warn ravers of the dangers or alcohol and drug consumption. Most of the list focuses on security measures like drug dogs, DUI checkpoints, and searches both inside and outside the venue.
While many of these practices are already in place at other festivals around the world, the most progressive item on the list involves vendors being prohibited to serve alcohol 1 hour prior to the end of the festival, and festivals providing an area where people can sober up for up to 2 hours after the last song. It may seem like many of these implications are unfair, but music festivals have gone widely unregulated in the US, which could be the reason why so many unfortunate incidents have occurred in the past 3-4 years. Hopefully LA County’s suggestions can help keep the dance community safe and set an example for other festivals across the US.