MUSIC fans questioned the use of drug disposal bins at yesterday’s Rock-It festival in Joondalup after people were seen shaking the bins and having their photograph taken with them.
Concert-goers have told inmycommunity.com.au that many people treated the bins as a joke and also questioned their effectiveness.
One music fan said they saw people openly smoking cannabis and another showing off what appeared to be a tablet on his tongue.
Police said the three bins, which were placed at the concert’s main entrance in full view of officers, were used.
Commander Brian Cunningham said small amounts of cannabis, ecstasy and dexamphetamines were put in them.
He said just 10 people were charged with drug-related offences at Rock-It, a significantly smaller number than three previous music festivals police targeted this year.
Global Gathering saw 38 charged, Big Day Out more than 70 and Summadayze 160.
"We are certainly satisfied with some aspects of the drug bins," Commander Cunningham said.
"It was pleasing to see that the message that drugs were not welcome at the event and that they are dangerous seems to have been accepted in that nobody was treated for drug overdoses at the festival.
"What was disappointing was that some people chose to ignore the bins and were caught with drugs trying to get into the concert.
"We will be conducting an evaluation of the bins in consultation with the Drug and Alcohol Office and DrugARM, and have engaged an independent company to conduct a survey of people who attended the festival.
"We also plan to trial the bins at future music festivals."
Police said the 26,000-strong Rock-It crowd was well behaved.
St John Ambulance treated 270 people on the day for heat and alcohol-related injuries and illnesses, including broken bones.
A veteran concert-goer said he was concerned one punter was able to smuggle a flare into the venue and set it off.
He said it was the first time in 15 years of attending concerts in WA that he had seen a flare go off during a concert.
The drug bins were being trialled for the first time and come in the wake of the suspected ecstasy overdose death of 17-year-old Gemma Thoms at the Big Day Out more than a month ago.
Police said people would be able to place drugs into the bins without fear of prosecution.
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