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Wednesday 24 January 2018

Extra security keeps crowd under control at O2 for Hardwell rave after Belfast chaos

Gardai walk with sniffer dogs while Hardwell fans filter into the venue. Photo: Jason Kennedy
Gardai walk with sniffer dogs while Hardwell fans filter into the venue. Photo: Jason Kennedy
An excited Hardwell fan. Photo: Jason Kennedy
A garda walks a sniffer dog outside the O2 in Dublin
Ambulance crews attend a major incident after up to 60 young people attending a concert at the Odyssey Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland were taken ill and treated for the effects of drugs and alcohol, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014. The incident happened at a dance event by Dutch DJ Hardwell. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)

Tonight's Hardwell gig at Dublin's O2 has begun without any incidents, gardai have confirmed.

A notable garda presence kept the crowd at bay at the concert venue, and sniffer dogs were also seen outside the venue.

A garda spokesperson confirmed tonight that no incidents occurred at the venue.

Gardai confirmed earlier today that there would be extra security following the 'major incident' at the DJ's concert in Belfast last night.

In Edinburgh, the City of Edinburgh Council has now suspended the licence for the DJ Hardwell Dance Event at the Royal Highland Showground at Ingliston tomorrow night.

It has been cancelled due to a "serious threat to public order and safety", authorities said.

Dozens of concert goers required medical treatment at the Odyssey arena in Belfast last night, for complications from alcohol and drug consumption.

A major incident was declared by the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service and in the city's hospitals, where extra staff were called in to help.

Many of those taken to hospital were under the age of 18.

Gardai were this morning in discussions with event organisers to see if extra security will be required.

Last night in Belfast 18 people were hospitalised.

Police said around 300 young people were refused entry to the premises - some of whom were drunk and others too young to gain entry to the 16-and-over gig.

Around 40 required care from medics, ambulance crews and charity volunteers who set up an ad hoc treatment area outside.

Inside the Odyssey, 68 concert goers needed medical assistance.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson from The O2 said that there will be a full team of medical, security and stewarding personnel on hand during tonight’s concert.

The spokesperson continued that the safety of customers is "always our paramount concern" and that they expect tonight’s proceedings to attract at least 5,500 revellers.

"This in a strictly over 18s event and has been widely advertised as such. No-one under 18 will be admitted and ID will be required to gain entry.

"Anyone arriving at the venue in an intoxicated state will also be refused entry. The venue and promoter are providing 23 non-public duty gardaí who will patrol the event," he added.

They said that the security plan in place is "normal for an event of this type", and that they are taking every precaution possible to "ensure a safe and enjoyable evening".

Irish Independent

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