New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced that the state’s Department of Health will conduct an investigation into a concert that appeared to ignore social distancing measures.
The Safe & Sound Hamptons concert, which is a charity series that hosted The Chainsmokers as its first show in Southampton, Long Island on Saturday, was scheduled to host 2,000 fans for a drive-in experience to allow for a COVID-19-safe environment.
However, in a Instagram Story video that has circulated, the crowd seems to be dancing in close proximity to one another near the stage.
Cuomo said he is “appalled” by the videos from the concert, which he said show “egregious social distancing violations.”
The New York Governor added that an investigation into the event will take place, stating: “We have no tolerance for the illegal and reckless endangerment of public health.”
Videos from a concert held in Southampton on Saturday show egregious social distancing violations. I am appalled.
The Department of Health will conduct an investigation.
We have no tolerance for the illegal & reckless endangerment of public health.https://t.co/gf9kggdo8w
— Archive: Governor Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) July 28, 2020
Prior to the event, organisers stated that they intended to provide a “new live event concept” that is both “safe and enjoyable” and carried out in a “controlled and safe environment.”
Each group of attendees (four to six people per car) was to be given a designated spot on the concert grounds, where they could park their vehicle and view the show.
On the ticketing page, organisers stated that those who leave their designated area for any reason other than to use the bathroom would be asked to leave.
In response to the backlash of the videos showing an apparent lack of social distancing, event organisers In The Know Experiences and Invisible Noise released a statement stating that the show “followed the guidelines created by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”
Organisers added: “Upon arrival, individuals within each car had their temperatures taken and were also provided complimentary face masks before driving to their designated 20′ x 20′ spot.”
Tickets for the benefit started at $1,250 for per-car prices, and the super VIP package reached $25,000. Proceeds were earmarked for No Kid Hungry, Southampton Fresh Air Home and the Children’s Medical Fund of New York.
The concert featured additional performances from Goldman Sachs chief executive David Solomon, who performs under the moniker DJ D-Sol, Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman’s band, and Matt White.
The Safe and Sound series is also planned in other major cities in the US, including Miami, Los Angeles and Chicago, among others.