Four people reportedly died during the Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE) that took place last week. The deaths appear to be isolated incidents, though police have ascribed three of the four to drug use.
Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant initially reported two deaths over the weekend. The first case relayed was that of a 33-year-old Serbian man, who died after collapsing outside an ADE event at Club Lite on Saturday, October 18th. Officials have determined the probable cause to be drug use. It was later reported that Felix Hines, the Head of Publishing for Phoenix Music International, also died on Saturday at a morning ADE event. The cause of his death has not yet been made public.
The following day brought about two more deaths. A 21-year-old Dutch man died on Sunday, October 19th, following hospitalization after an ADE event at the Westergasfabriek the night before. The police again cited drug use as a probable cause. It was subsequently confirmed by the police that a 41-year-old Dutch woman passed away at another ADE event at Club Lite on Sunday. The coroner found the cause of death to be ecstasy use.
The festival’s Director, Richard Zijlma, responded to the losses in a statement issued on Monday. “The ADE organization is shocked by these tragic accidents. We are in close contact with all of the venues, municipalities and emergency services that are part of the ADE Festival and every precaution is taken to ensure the safety and security of the audience at all participating venues. Each venue is responsible for its own security and door policy and a comprehensive inspection is also completed at every venue entrance.”
“Drug use is not tolerated in any way at ADE and its partners make every effort to ensure that people are behaving responsibly at the event. Ultimately, there is a limit to what we can do, and individuals must take responsibility for their own actions. Our thoughts are with the families and friends at this time and we would like to express our deepest sympathy to them.”
Representatives of ADE claim that these are the first deaths that have occurred in association with the annual dance industry conference, which took place from October 15th to October 19th and featured over 2,200 artists. The festival consisted of over 300 events at 120 venues. Following the tragedies, Dutch politicians have already begun discussing the possibility of drug testing at music festivals and other events.