'Attendees must be vaccinated': Ballito Rage organisers talk safety measures at this year's event

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In addition to the requirement to be fully vaccinated, the organisers will be making use of WHO, and SAHPRA approved Rapid Antigen tests. (Joshua Coleman/Unsplash)
In addition to the requirement to be fully vaccinated, the organisers will be making use of WHO, and SAHPRA approved Rapid Antigen tests. (Joshua Coleman/Unsplash)

It's an event matriculants might be using as motivation to get through their finals

However, feelings about matric rage may be centred more so around apprehension than anticipation for their parents. 

But according to Greg Walsh, CEO of G&G Productions, the organisers behind this year's Ballito Rage, safety is a top priority at the upcoming event. 

From security and Covid-19 safety measures to transport availability for partying teens. Here's what Walsh told us festival-goers could expect at this year's Ballito Rage. 

Also read: A guide to understanding the mysteries of the teenage brain

How many festival-goers are expected this year?

The number of attendees has been kept in line with the current gathering regulations of a maximum of 750 people indoor and 2,000 outdoor. As such, ticket sales have been capped at under 2,000, including staff, to ensure that we are within government regulations.

Could you tell us about the security measures put in place?

Rage Festival in Ballito takes the safety of its attendees, staff and community extremely seriously. All attendees are given an RFID wristband that has all their key information on it. The wristband is scanned at all entry points to ensure the organisers can locate and assist festival-goers should the need arise. The bar and security staff are fully trained to be extra vigilant and aware of potentially risky situations. Rage Festival works with numerous volunteer support organisations that provide peer support groups that walk through the venues offering a sober hand, water, and assistance.

What Covid-19 safety measures are in place?

All attendees will be required to show proof of their government-approved Covid-19 vaccination certificate, which the organisers will verify through the Department of Health's EVDS health passport. In addition to the requirement to be fully vaccinated, the organisers will be making use of WHO, and SAHPRA approved Rapid Antigen tests. All staff will need to be fully vaccinated, too and will be tested daily before entry. Attendees will be tested on the first and fourth day of the five-day festival. Sanitiser stations will be placed throughout the venues, and the organisers will mandate any further restrictions in line with the gatherings regulations at the time.

Will there be police and medical emergency present?

The normal medical protocols and systems will be put in place as per requirements of the standard special event legislation, the SASRIA act. In addition to this, the organisers will implement the following additional measures.

  • Covid-19 Compliance Team.
  • Manual Covid-19 screening at venue entrances, including temperature checks.
  • Covid-19 isolation area and response vehicle/ambulance.
  • Daily Covid-19 data reporting to the Department of Health.

In addition to the medical plan, the following preventative measures will be put into place:

  • Digital communication.
  • Festival communication boards.
  • Continuous sanitising of all touchable surfaces.

Local SAPS are aware of the event and have provided their Situation Report, and Risk Categorisation and additional measures have also been put in place with the local security providers. 

The Joint Operations Committee (JOC) will be the central command station and operate as the joint operations centre for all safety representatives. The JOC will have a Covid-19 Response Manager, Security representative and a Safety Officer present every day during hours of operations and will provide the following:

  • Daily reviews of all venue reports.
  • Reporting feedback sessions.
  • Monitor measures in place.
  • Daily reports.

What kind of transport will be available for partying students?

The standard transportation will be branded taxi's (Umhlanga Taxi Association and the Ballito Taxi Association). The Transport Plan and routed taxi system will be implemented to ensure the safety of all Ragers.

  • Taxis used in the transport system will be clearly branded.
  • Ragers will only use branded Rage Rides Taxis.
  • All drivers and rank managers will be fully vaccinated and comply with the testing requirements of festival staff.
  • All windows will be open.
  • Rage Rides Taxis will be fogged daily and aerosol sanitised after each drop-off.
  • Each taxi driver will have an assistant with them to assist with the immediate cleaning process after every round trip/ delivery.

What is the arrangement around accommodation?

Festival-goers make their own accommodation arrangements. 

Will there be safety armbands provided for festival-goers?

Yes, as always, we use a robust pre-registration process and an on-site NFC system to safeguard attendees. In a secure format, these armbands carry all their personal data, next of kin, medical aid information and all the details around their Covid-19 tests on-site at the festival.

Also see: Denied the school dance due to outstanding school fees? This is what you can do

What are the plans to address drug use?

There will be security checks at each entrance, with undercover security patrolling inside the venues to ensure the festival remains a drug-free zone. The festival has a zero-tolerance drug policy, with any offenders will be escorted out of the venues and their festival access rescinded. Any person caught in or near the festival trying to sell any narcotics will be handed over to the SAPS.

Any special safety tips for students?

  • Be respectful and aware of your fellow attendees so everyone can have a great time in a safe environment.
  • Read up on the rules and Covid-19 requirements and advice on the Rage Festival website to familiarise yourself with key information at www.ragefestival.com. 
  • Be cool; your actions affect others. Stick to the official Rage Festival events only. These events have gone to every effort to manage the risk of Covid-19 and many other risks associated with entertainment and provide a safe and secure environment. Going out partying elsewhere could make you the person to bring Covid-19 into Rage Festival or get yourself and your friends into quarantine. Be mindful, think of others and come with a great attitude, ready to have fun in a smart way.
  • And lastly, know that there is always someone from the event organisation team who is on hand to assist with any queries.

Is your teen planning on attending any of the rage festivals or similar events after the exams? What are your biggest concerns? 

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