Miller Barondess’ Recommendations to the Coliseum Commission After EDC Death
LA Coliseum Limits Raves Following Death
By JEAN GUERRERO
The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Commission voted unanimously today to adopt new restrictions on raves after concerns were raised following the ecstasy-related death of a 15-year-old girl and the hospitalization of more than 114 others who attended last month’s Electric Daisy Carnival.
The restrictions were proposed by the private law firm Miller Barondess, which the commission hired shortly after the massive, late-June event to make recommendations.
The new rules include strictly enforcing an age limit of 18, publicizing the dangers of drugs on the event websites, displaying an emergency services text number at the events and increasing the number of law enforcement and health officials on site.
Pasquale Rotella, owner of Insomniac Events, the promotion company in charge of the Electric Daisy Carnival, said he approved of the restrictions.
Electric Daisy attracted 180,000 people, many of them teenagers, over two days and nights.
Earlier this week, Insomniac released a statement expressing its intent to establish an age limit of 18 until a consulting firm it hired finishes assessing safety protocols. Underage people who have already purchased tickets to future events will receive a refund, according to the statement.
“When I hear about people getting hurt, that’s not why we do these events. We do these events for people to hear music, come together and have a good time,” Mr. Rotella said. “Your concerns are my concerns.”
The commission also extended a moratorium it enacted last month on new raves at the venue, which includes the Los Angeles Sports Arena. Barry Sanders, president of the commission, said the moratorium will stay in place until the effectiveness of the new rules at three upcoming events is evaluated.
Mr. Sanders said he wanted to “set the gold standard” for cities across the nation who wish to hold raves safely.
During the public comment period, residents expressed their concern that the events encourage young people to take ecstasy. Some urged the committee to ban raves altogether, while others argued for new restrictions.
“It glorifies drugs,” said 18-year-old Nick Nevarez, referring to the Electric Daisy Carnival.
He said he was impressionable and 16 when he started going to raves and taking ecstasy. While riding home from a rave last year with an intoxicated stranger, he was involved in a car accident that shattered 40% of his skull.
Because he had taken multiple pills of ecstasy at the event, the damage to his brain was extensive, he said. Mr. Nevarez said he hopes the committee’s new restrictions – like the age limit – will protect other young people from acting irresponsibly.
Councilmember Bernard Parks, a member of the commission, said he thought that with the number of people attending the events, an occasional death and multiple hospitalizations were inevitable.
“I don’t think we can take responsibility for every act of someone under the influence,” Mr. Parks said.
He and other members of the commission stressed their intent to continue adding to or changing their regulations of the events, and ban them altogether of the regulations prove ineffective.