Tuesday 17 September 2019

Teenager fighting for his life after becoming unwell at Indiependence Festival amid warning of 'bad batch of something'

Cork University Hospital
Cork University Hospital

Ralph Riegel

A TEEN is now fighting for his life after suddenly falling ill at a popular Cork music festival.

The 19 year old sought medical attention at the Indiependence Festival in Mitchelstown, Co Cork late on Friday evening after suddenly complaining of feeling unwell.

The teen was brought to medical staff by concerned friends.

He was immediately treated on site before being rushed by ambulance to Cork University Hospital (CUH).

Unfortunately, his condition deteriorated and he is now understood to be in a critical condition in CUH.

His family were notified and they rushed to be by his hospital bedside.

The teen is not from Cork.

He is understood to have been visiting the three day festival from another Munster county with a group of school friends.

The circumstances in which the teen fell ill are not yet clear.

An Indiependence festival spokesperson confirmed they were aware of the incident.

"A 19 year old male reported to medical (staff) on Friday evening and was treated on site by a doctor before being transferred to CUH where his condition is being monitored," the spokesperson said.

"To clarify media reports of drug related issues at Indie 2019, we wish to confirm that since the event opened at 10am on Friday (August 2), we have had one drug related transfer to CUH.

"Chief Medical Officer William Wade has confirmed that on Friday evening a 19 year old male was transferred to CUH having received treatment from the on-site doctor."

More than 15,000 music fans are attending the Mitchelstown event which is being headlined by Bastille and Lewis Capaldi.

In a social media post as the festival opened, the organisers issued a welfare message about "a bad batch of something in the campsite.

"We have reports of a bad batch of something in the campsite - do not consume any substance that you are unsure about. It has the potential to make you very sick. Please be careful and look after each other," it urged.

A similar welfare alert was issued by CUH on social media.

"We are aware that a text message was issued to attendees concerning reports of a bad batch of something on the campsite. Please circulate and to all attending stay safe," the hospital posted on Twitter.

CUH doctor Mike O'Connor urged young people to avoid drugs at all costs.

"There is a medical tent (at Indie) - there is very good medical support at the festival," he said.

"The advice for anyone at events like these is not to be on your own - make sure you have a buddy with you at all times."

"But the main advice is to avoid taking drugs of any description. If it happens and people feel unwell or are suddenly dizzy, if they are getting drowsy or if they might have unusual sensations in their legs and arms, make sure you are brought to the medical tent immediately."

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