On Sunday, a security guard was trampled by fans trying to rush the entrance at Ultra Music Festival. Within hours, Miami mayor Thomas Regalado and other city officials started pressuring Ultra to leave (the guard is in critical condition, with serious brain hemorrhaging and other injuries).
“They should move on and get another venue,” Regalado flatly told local Miami news outlet CBS4.
The reaction by Miami officials stands in stark contrast to that of SXSW, where 4 people have now been confirmed dead and 21 injured after a police chase barreled into a heavily-populated, closed off street in March. SXSW continued the festival the next morning without any interruption.
“We understand that this brings a lot of name recognition and money to the City of Miami, but the most important thing is quality of life,” Regalado continued.
Miami Police Commissioner Marc Sarnoff took things a step further, suggesting that injuries and deaths are almost inevitable once a festival reaches a certain size. “There’s no way of policing that many people because we know about stampedes: they’ve happened in the past, and luckily our police officers were able to handle it.”