Editor's Note: This weekend, we will be bringing you coverage of Electric Daisy Carnival courtesy of our sister paper, L.A. Weekly. As hot as it will be in Las Vegas this weekend, it will be even hotter in Phoenix, with highs of 104, 109, and 117 on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Welcome to the little hell we call the desert, ravers. We hope you like it here.
You're heading to Las Vegas with more than 100,000 of your closest friends for the greatest EDM show on earth, Electric Daisy Carnival. We hope you packed sunscreen and water. We already know you don't plan on wearing much — an EDC tradition.
Temperatures are expected to soar this weekend in Las Vegas, according to the National Weather Service. The federal forecast says highs of 97 (Friday), 103 (Saturday) and 108 (Sunday) will strike during the three-day festival. Monday, the first official day of summer, could see a high of 110 degrees.
Federal meteorologist Caleb Steele says that overnight low temps over the weekend will be in the low- to mid-80s (!!!).
He says high pressure building over the Four Corners would affect Phoenix, then Vegas, then Southern California. "This time of the year, it could last a bit," Steele says. "The high sticks around."
"Drinking plenty of water throughout the weekend is vital to your health and safety," EDC promoter Insomniac states. "Drink water at regular intervals, especially in warm weather, and be sure to stay hydrated on the days leading up to the show."
EDC will have water for sale as well as "hydration stations" with free H20.
Steele points out that visitors to Vegas sometimes don't realize how much water their bodies are losing.
"It's heat, but it's also how dry the air is here," he says. "Even if you're not feeling hot, you're losing water through your skin. It's important to hydrate while you're visiting."
EDC has seen about one ecstasy death per year since the event moved to Las Vegas from Los Angeles in 2011. Experts have drawn a correlation between hot environments, vigorous activity (dancing), and MDMA-triggered deaths.
The hot weather "certainly exacerbates the situation," says Dr. Marc Futernick, medical director of emergency services at California Hospital Medical Center. "One of the things we see with ecstasy is elevated temperature. So if temperature is elevated already, the weather is an additional factor."
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The doctor warned, however, not to overdo it with water. Some MDMA deaths have been attributed to hyponatremia — low blood-sodium levels. Futernick suggests, and studies have also said the same, that drinking too much water while on ecstasy dilutes blood sodium levels, which can trigger organ failure and cause death.
Futernick was critical of EDC when it was held at the Los Angeles Coliseum. He compared his nearby emergency room to a war-style trauma facility during such events.
"One of the things that's most impressive is the volume of patients all coming at one time," he told us in 2010.
His advice is not to use MDMA at all, especially during such hot weather. He also says sports drinks with electrolytes, such as Gatorade, could be a lifesaver.