Final Day of NYC’s Electric Zoo Festival Canceled After Two Drug-Related Deaths

The electronic dance music festival was canceled after two concert-goers died and four others were sent to area hospitals

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Daniel Zuchnik / Getty Images

Electric Zoo at Randall's Island on Aug. 31, 2013 in New York City.

The final day of New York City’s three-day Electric Zoo music festival, held on Randall’s Island, was canceled after two concert-goers overdosed and died at the event, the city announced in a statement on Sunday. At least four others remain in critical condition at area hospitals. Though the official cause of death hasn’t been released, it appears that the fatalities resulted from the use of MDMA — either in the form of Ecstasy pills or in its powder or crystal form known as Molly, CNN reports.

“The Electric Zoo organizers have worked with City officials to reduce health risks at this event,” the city explained in the statement, “but in view of these occurrences, the safest course is to cancel the remaining day of the event.”

The festival-goers who died were identified as 20-year-old Olivia Rotondo and 23-year-old Jeffrey Russ. Rotondo was studying communications at the University of New Hampshire, and Russ graduated in 2012 from Syracuse University, the New York Times reports.

The event hosts published the following statement on their website on Sunday morning: “The founders of Electric Zoo send our deepest condolences to the families of the two people who passed away this weekend. Because there is nothing more important to us than our patrons, we have decided in consultation with the New York City Parks Department that there will be no show today.”

The three-day festival draws tens of thousands of music fans each year. Last year’s event reportedly had over 100,000 attendees. No numbers have been released as to how many attended this year’s shows.