Festival-goers say positive Covid tests a ‘wake-up call’

Source: 1News

Several young people say it’s been a wake-up call testing positive for Covid-19 after attending Soundsplash in Hamilton last weekend.

Several people have tested positive for Covid-19 after attending Soundsplash.

The Ministry of Health said Thursday that five attendees have tested positive following the event so far, with one of them confirmed as having the Omicron variant.

However, festival-goers spoken to by 1News say more people have since returned positive results.

The three-day event's been named a location of interest, with 68 people so far being identified as close contacts.

That number is expected to increase.

An 18-year-old man, who has asked not to be named, tested positive for the virus on Thursday after returning home to Auckland from the festival on Sunday.

He told 1News it’s been a massive wake-up call, “this stuff can come local, you know.”

“I thought I might maybe get away with not getting Covid.”

Another festival-goer told 1News she had a slight cough but didn’t think anything of it until her test came back positive on Thursday.

“I had the phone call come through and my heart just stopped.”

She says she feels there is still a stigma around Covid-19 in New Zealand.

“It’s quite scary.”

A lot of young people are making fun of the positive cases, she said.

She told 1News 11 of her friends have tested positive, two of which are the Omicron variant.

"One of the two [cases] include the one who initially got told she had Delta."

Another friend who also tested positive after the festival says several more friends are in isolation awaiting results.

All three cases told 1News they thought the risk of catching Covid-19 was lower as you had to be vaccinated to attend the festival.

She thought it would be safer because everyone’s vaccine passes were checked.

But mask wearing wasn’t enforced, nor was scanning in, the trio told 1News.

The man who spoke to 1News says he felt freedom from Covid-19 at the festival, “but I didn’t feel too good that I didn’t have to sign into anything, you know.”

Soundsplash in a statement: "The event held under the orange traffic light level was held in accordance with the Covid-19 protection framework, with all protocols strictly followed including the scanning of Vaccine Passes."

Stuff reported a festival-goer saying staff were wearing masks and there were QR codes visible.

There were 45 Covid-19 cases recorded on Thursday, 34 of which were Omicron.