Forty evacuated from Gathering

Dominion - 3 January 2000

About 80 people at The Gathering dance party suffered hypothermia and 40 were evacuated as the event ended yesterday after persistent rain. A busload of cold revellers were taken to the Salvation Army hall in Motueka yesterday afternoon, where they were treated for various levels of hyporthermia. [see note 1]

An ambulance spokesman said about a dozen were in moderate to severe condition and some were admitted to hospital. [see note 1]

Heated tents were provided for shelter at the venue while other party-goers waited for transport out. Organisers searched the remote site on Takaka Hill to ensure all revellers were accounted for. Gathering spokeswoman Alison Green said those with hypothermia had been dancing most of Saturday night and Sunday morning in the rain - some in bare feet - amid a "sea of mud".

"They just got a little bit too cold and wet."

Organisers provided blankets and warm clothes. Police praised the behaviour of patrons.

Dominion, 3 January 2000

WebEd's corrections

note 1

This is inaccurate reporting. We took 40 Gatherers suffering from mild hypothermia to Motueka Salvation Army hall where they were checked out by St John Ambulance staff, and given food and warm clothes before being taken to Nelson College for the night. No-one was suffering from severe hypothermia. We took these Gatherers off the hill BEFORE their situation became serious. Only four went to hospital for observation, with two of these suffering from existing medical conditions, and one with a tummy bug.

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