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03 Oct 2022

Electric Picnic festival goer's life saved after drug incident

Electric Picnic festival goer's life saved after drug incident

Gardaí at Electric Picnic 2022 Photo: Alf Harvey

A woman's life was saved in a drug related medical emergency at Electric Picnic last weekend.

The festival goer was taken to Portlaoise hospital where staff are said to have "saved her life". Laois Gardaí say that the “significant medical event” took place on Friday night, September 2.

The woman reportedly reacted badly to a substance taken, she became unresponsive and in a critical condition, and was “removed urgently” to hospital by Gardaí.

“The brilliance of medical staff in Portlaoise hospital saved her life,” a senior Garda has said.

It was an isolated incident in what was a relatively peaceful festival, as Gardaí report noticing “a definite reduction in levels of crime”.

There were some arrests made for people driving under the influence, but “not in huge numbers”.

Drug detections were “on a par with other years”.

A man caught with stolen phones was arrested and charged and is facing court.

Reports of assaults were lower than at previous Electric Picnic festivals.

The festival organisers had issued three warnings about high strength illegal drugs tested by the HSE on site over the weekend.

On Friday the alert was over “high strength ecstasy tablets in circulation onsite”, called Mybrand Purple skull pills. MDMA powders or crystals were found to be “high strength” on Saturday following lab testing. On Sunday they warned that the HSE lab had identifed 3-CMC, a synthetic cathinone substance.

Traffic was the biggest issue for Gardaí at the bigger than ever weekend festival.

“It was busier down to the increased numbers attending Traffic was quite a challenge. Even though large volumes arrived on Thursday, Friday was exceptionally busy.

“The general populace was good humoured and weren't interested in causing any bother, they were there for a good time. There was a general feelgood factor. The weather didn't seem to dampen anyone, many went home and came back,” the Laois senior Garda said.

Tickets for next year's festival go on sale online only this Saturday morning, with a loyalty registration scheme now closed.

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