It seems like the curse plaguing electronic music events took a vacation overseas to cause mayhem over at Germany's Love Parade this weekend where 19 were killed after a stampede at the entrance of the event. Again, like Electric Daisy Carnival, organizers failed to provide adequate security and space for the 1.4 million patrons resulting in the deaths and causing injury to 340 people. The German city of Duisburg, where the 2010 edition took place, seems to have been woefully unprepared for the massive influx of people.
Right now, organizers and city officials are playing the blame game, so what happened exactly is still a bit murky. What is known is that there was only one entrance to the event via a tunnel. At some point, the grounds, which were located at an old rail yard, reached capacity and the gates were closed. Security told everyone to turn around, which caused rumors and panic to spread among those trying to reach the Love Parade. Despite the deaths and injuries, at no point did the organizers pull the plug on the event, insisting that it would have just caused more panic. Really? They couldn't explain via microphone to everyone what was happening?
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Love Parade's response to the tragedy was to immediately call for an end to all future events -- drastic when you compare EDC's response, which was to raise the age limit to its events to 18 and over.
It's hard to compare Love Parade to Ultra Music Festival, seeing how both events are drastically different in size. But as electronic music events seem to be getting more and more bad press lately, anti-rave hysteria seems to be reaching a fever pitch. How long until our own city officials start questioning the safety of our own local events like Ultra? Safety and security always seem to be top priority at Ultra, but we have a feeling everything will be given a closer look for the 2011 edition.