Two men die after collapsing at electronic music festival

Another two party-goers injured at Neverland electronic music festival

Dead Sea rave (photo credit: YOSSI MAMIA)
Dead Sea rave
(photo credit: YOSSI MAMIA)

Two men, aged 55 and 27, died on Monday after collapsing at the Neverland electronic music festival, held near Kibbutz Lahavot Habashan, in the Hula Valley.


The two were given medical care at the scene and taken to Ziv Medical Center in Safed where they were pronounced dead. The bodies were taken for autopsies to determine the cause of death.


The 55-year-old man was a resident of Ashkelon and the 27-year-old was from Kiryat Shmona.


Police instructed medical officials to determine whether or not the deaths were caused by an overdose of drugs, alcohol or both.


Channel 2 reported that there are no findings that implicate the organizers of the party in the deaths of the two party-goers.


The Upper Galilee Regional Council said that the organizers of the party had received permits after meeting all criteria of the police, firefighters, and health and security authorities. Extending its condolences to the families     of those who died, the council said it would no longer allow nature parties to be held in the area.


Another two people were injured at the party and evacuated to the Ziv Medical Center: a 20-year-old man who sustained moderate injuries, and a woman of the same age who sustained a facial injury after she fell.


Organized around the theme of “new age pirates,” the Neverland electronic music festival was attended by thousands of people. The two-day event featured 34 different musical performances on two major stages, with the participation of Israeli and international musicians.


The event page highlighted that “the festival is 100% confirmed by all local authorities and bares full licenses as instructed by the various local government agencies.”


The Neverland festival is not the first rave to end in tragedy.


In August 2017, Tohar David died after collapsing and suffering a head injury at a nature party. David, who was in her 20s, was found lying unconscious on the side of the road at Lehavim junction near a bus stop.


Following the incident, police arrested three suspects in their 30s and their remand was repeatedly extended on suspicion of manslaughter. They were released in September 2017 under restrictive conditions. Police said in August this year that they had completed their investigation and had transferred their findings to the State Attorney’s Office for review.

The police investigation found that organizers of the party waited some five hours before they sought professional medical help for her, a delay which police suspect caused her death.


Police found that the delay in seeking help for the woman stemmed from the organizers’ fear that the medical authorities would report the party to the police, resulting in a potential shutdown of the party and a financial loss to the event organizers. That party was held without a permit and appropriate medical and security measures were not taken.


Last month, two people were injured at a nature party which was held without a license in the Binyamin area. At the same party, police arrested a suspect who allegedly attacked police officers, as well as detaining the party’s organizers, security and others involved.