“The ‘Haunted Coliseum’ rave party at the Nassau Coliseum on Saturday night ended with nearly 100 drunken youths being removed to area hospitals…Though 50 rave participants were treated for injuries, no fatalities were reported.” – LongIsland.com
With the latest headline-grabbing crash at Daytona International Speedway injuring more than 30 spectators, not to mention the players brawl at a recent NBA Pacer’s game in Indianapolis which landed in the seats, fan wellbeing during sports and entertainment events has become a genuine concern.
While the Nassau Coliseum remains as safe a place as any for audiences, in the past, several patrons have reportedly been injured at various events. Furthermore, Coliseum employees have claimed exposure to asbestos while working at the arena.
Naturally, this leads to the ever-important matter of fan safety.
Various prior injuries
A number of partygoers needed to be transported from the Coliseum to local area hospitals last fall after sustaining minor injuries at a Halloween rave called the “Haunted Coliseum.” According to an article published by LongIsland.com on Oct. 29, 2012, “50 Injured at Nassau Coliseum Rave,” the authorities immediately shut the trick-or-treat bash down “when it became apparent something was going desperately wrong.”
Prior to that, one Coliseum visitor filed suit for injuries in 2008 after being knocked to the ground by a swarm of enthusiastic fans who were pursuing free t-shirts thrown into the stands during a hockey game. What’s more, a Long Island mom sued when her son was injured in a Coliseum mosh pit that she alleged got way out of hand.
Claims by employees
On April 2, 2012, Mesothelioma.com reported “A few weeks after complaints surfaced from employees of the Nassau Coliseum who feared for their health due to asbestos exposure inside the facility, preliminary reports have dubbed the building safe for patrons, though asbestos was indeed found in areas that are frequented by staff.”
Beyond the asbestos issue, there haven’t been any additional allegations of injuries due to marauding t-shirt hungry mobs or reckless mosh pits, so it seems the Coliseum has those threats under control.
Based on sheer numbers, it seems rave parties present the biggest compromise to fan security at the Coliseum. It will be interesting to see if similar celebrations are prohibited in the future.
Generally speaking, the Coliseum is a safe enough place to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live there.