Festival season is upon us and if you want to party safely, we have some tips and tricks on how to enjoy each and every music festival to the fullest.
Alex Pollak, CEO and Founder of ParaDocs Worldwide, has been a paramedic since 1998 and has worked 911 throughout his undergraduate and graduate studies. While working for a national medical equipment company in their finance department, he saw a niche market for event medical services. Most festivals at the time would call to have ambulances stationed at the event, but never any proper on-site services. Pollak created ParaDocs Worldwide about five years ago to serve the world’s private and public venues with doctors and paramedics. Their goal is to provide the most professional medical standby services for events of all sizes, including physicians, registered nurses, paramedics, and emergency medical technicians.
On-site medical care at events is more effective for two reasons; the hospitals don’t get overwhelmed and the care that patients receive is immediate. At music events, if an individual takes certain substances and becomes ill, they receive the care on-site versus transporting them to the nearest hospital, which can take a minimum of 10 to 15 minutes, a crucial amount of time when someone’s life is in danger.
ParaDocs Worldwide has worked with tons of music festivals, and based on what they’ve seen, they revealed nine basic tips on how to stay safe at a live music event.
1. The Buddy System: Going to a festival in a group and creating a buddy system where people are responsible for each other is incredibly helpful. A buddy system can also come in handy during times when you don’t feel well. If you feel dehydrated or think you may faint, tell your buddy or buddies and let them know what is going on.
2. Drink your Juice: Alcohol dehydrates and so do energy drinks. What’s going to help you is the balance of both water and electrolytes. How much water one should consume is dependent on BMI, age, weather, and level of activity, but an average adult at a festival during a hot summer day should drink about two to four eight ounce cups per hour.
3. You won’t get in trouble if you tell the truth: If you feel anything is wrong, or see someone acting strange or sick, go to the medical tent. We would rather see someone 50 times a day as opposed to finding them once they reach a critical point. Just come check in with us to make sure you or your friends are okay. If you come in and you’re proactive and tell us what you took, you will not get into trouble, especially if you’re over 18. Don’t worry that your parents are getting a phone call from us, we’re not allowed to tell them because of patient confidentiality. ParaDocs is trying hard to break this stigma that you’re going to get in trouble if you come to the medical tent. It’s a very safe place; medical is not the enemy.
4. Sharing is Caring: If you see someone in need of a snack or a drink, share with them! If you were in their place, hungry, thirsty or dehydrated, you would want someone to share with you. However, DO NOT take food or drink from someone you do not know as that can be dangerous.
5. Play Nice: Don’t steal someone’s better standing spot, don’t push people in order to get a better view and certainly don’t take anything that isn’t yours. It’s pretty obvious but starting a fight with a stranger could be pretty dangerous and will most likely get you kicked out of the festival.
6. Listen Carefully: When you hear an announcement over the loud speaker, you should stop right where you are and pay close to attention to what is being said. If you are aware of your surroundings, then you will know what to do in times of emergency. If you aren’t listening, you may be unaware of a potentially harmful situation (or you may miss your favorite band).
7. Pack Healthy Snacks: We all love those unhealthy snacks, but when you are outside all day, you don’t want to eat food that is going to make you tired or is not really filling. Also, don’t bring anything that is too messy because, most likely, you will be eating while standing.
8. Don’t Skip Nap Time: Of course you don’t want to miss the action, but if you haven’t slept for 24 hours, you probably won’t be able to enjoy your time at the festival. Take a nap or sleep through the night. This way, you can get the most out of your day.
9. Keep Your Clothes On: Self-explanatory.