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Ultra Miami imposes age limit, hires new security chief

By | Published on Wednesday 3 September 2014

Ultra Festival

Ultra Music Festival in Miami has announced that it will introduce a minimum age limit for its 2015 edition, and that it has hired a new head of security. Previously an all-ages affair, the event will now only be open to over eighteens.

As previously reported, the festival struggled to gain a licence for 2015, following an incident this year which saw a security guard seriously injured when part of the fence surrounding the festival was pushed down.

Miami city officials were critical of Ultra promoters, claiming that the authorities had warned organisers about the issues with the particular area of fencing where the incident took place. Although a licence for 2015 was ultimately granted, the city’s mayor Tomas Regalado has said that he intends to oppose the event in subsequent years.

Speaking to CMU about the addition of an age limit to the festival, Regalado said: “This is one of the issues that I raised last year. I believe this is a step in the right direction. However, I still believe that Downtown Miami is not the right venue for the festival”.

In a statement yesterday, Ultra’s organisers said: “While we sincerely value the incredible ongoing support from our younger fans, we ultimately believe that Ultra Music Festival is a premium event geared towards adults. This decision has been made to reinforce and promote the safety of all Ultra Music Festival fans and to ensure the overall enjoyment of all future attendees”.

They added: “We are extremely grateful for all the support we have received from our younger fan base to date and we encourage them to attend the festival once they reach the appropriate age. Until then, our free YouTube stream ‘Ultra Live’ is available worldwide for everyone, all ages to enjoy and to share in the Ultra experience”.

The event has also hired a new head of security, former Miami Beach Police Chief Ray Martinez, who said: “The first step to having fun is feeling safe. We have chosen to adopt several new measures during next year’s festival to ensure our event is safe and secure. The first step to preserving the unique atmosphere that Ultra is famous for is to be proactive in attracting the right crowd”.

Ultra Miami 2015 will take place from 27-29 Mar.

UPDATE 4 Sep 12:56pm: Added comment from Miami mayor Tomas Regalado