The Bestival music event finished this last weekend in Dorset, England and while most festivalgoers enjoyed the music, some were exposed to dangerous MDMA pills that left many awake for over 96 hours. The Loop, a drug safety organization, did some digging to explore what was in these drugs and why they are so dangerous. As a reminder, it was just this past July when we learned that the UK’s drug use has reached record-high levels among youth.
After testing around 450 MDMA samples, ‘pentylone’ and ‘N-ethyl’ both showed up positive. While normal MDMA shouldn’t leave you awake for 4 days and/or with temporary psychosis, these pills were no different in smell or appearance. According to The Loop’s director Fiona Measham, the drugs they found were around three times stronger than normal MDMA, resulting in the abnormal side effects.
‘There were people at Bestival who had been awake for three or four days after taking it.”
Fiona explained more about the process to Metro.co.uk:
“If we test it, at least we know what we’re dealing with and then the medics and welfare officers can look after them appropriately, and we can put out a warning on our social media channels. Exactly half the people who brought us it had already taken it.
So we’re getting people coming to us after they’ve had a bad time. People sometimes mistake our service for the fact that we might be encouraging future use but actually we’re helping people understand past use.
This is about reducing harm, it’s not necessarily about reducing use.”
Additionally at Bestival, The Loop founds several pills shaped like Donald Trump that contained 250mg of MDMA, twice the normal amount! Cocaine tested at the event turned out to be chloroquine.
Let this be a warning of the danger of drugs at festivals. You never really know what’s inside the pills you find. It’s not worth your life, so stay safe this summer and check out The Loop’s website here for tips on staying safe with drugs.
Tablets with "Donald Trump" logo tested by @WeAreTheLoopUK at #Bestival2018 containing 250+mg of MDMA – over two doses in one tablet. Others tested in Europe with different strengths. Visit The Loop on site for independent drug safety testing and advice. pic.twitter.com/4izWhgysMi
— The Loop (@WeAreTheLoopUK) August 3, 2018