Miami Officials Call To End Future Ultra Music Fests
March 31, 2014 at 11:17 AM (PT)
Several MIAMI officials are calling for the end of the ULTRA MUSIC FESTIVAL in downtown MIAMI after a security guard at the fest was trampled while trying to stop a group of people who didn’t have tickets and then stormed a fence to get inside, CBSLOCAL.COM reports. The guard, ERICA MACK, was listed as “critical” but stable condition with severe brain hemorrhaging and a broken leg.
Besides the trampling incident, the three-day EDM fest was also marred by several arrests, drug overdoses and other incidents of fence hopping. That has prompted MIAMI Mayor TOMAS REGALADO and City Commissioner MARC SARNOFF to call and end to the annual fest.
“The mayor and I will be proposing a resolution in front of the commission that would deny them the ability to have ULTRA in the future,” SARNOFF said. “I think they have overstayed their welcome.”
“What happened this weekend is an event that could have been avoided,” said MAYOR REGALADO. “The organizers of ULTRA did not follow the police directive to reinforce the fence, even though they knew that this year, and the year before, some kids have tried to over run the fences. In the next weeks we are going to have a discussion on the city commission level to deny the permits for next year for the event here in the city of MIAMI.”
ULTRA’s organizers issued the following statement.
“The event organizers of ULTRA MUSIC FESTIVAL share the sentiments of our security partner, CSC, with regard to the condition of ERICA MACK, the security guard currently receiving treatment at JACKSON MEMORIAL HOSPITAL. The ULTRA family hopes for a swift and full recovery. The event organizers prohibit any form of unlawful entry in to the event grounds. Preliminary investigations show that the incident was caused by individuals not in possession of event tickets and who were determined to gain unauthorized entry. Every year the event organizers work collaboratively with police and other municipal partners along with the organizers’ independent security partners to ensure the safety of all patrons, crew and working personnel. Because a thorough investigation is underway, event organizers regret that additional comment cannot be provided at this time. The event coordinators are cooperating fully with investigative authorities.”
Ironically, not everyone is on board with the move to stop the ULTRA FEST, since it generates millions of dollars in revenue each year. “The structural issues can be resolved," LT. DAN KERR of MIAMI FRATERNAL ORDER OF POLICE said. "This is not an event where it’s a problem inside. It’s a problem outside. Some of the officers who work the event all three days appreciate that opportunity to work due to the fact we have had cuts with all of the stuff at city hall. This is a way for them to supplement their income.”