Emergency Info

Guidelines on when to call the Emergency Services 999 for unwell recreational drug users

Call 999 if ANY one of the following is present:

Unconsciousness – if the patient does not respond to vocal commands, requires painful stimulus (e.g. pressure across the fingernails) to respond or does not respond at all.

Significant agitation (e.g. pacing around the room) or aggression not settling within 15 minutes.

Seizures (e.g. a convulsion similar to an epileptic fit)

Breathing difficulties such as fast breathing rate which does not settle within 15 minutes.

Heart rate over 140 beats per minute not settling within 5 minutes.

Temperature over 38.5 not settling after about 5 minutes of rest, or if very flushed and feels very hot if no thermometer is available.

Blood pressure – Systolic (“upper pressure”) over 180mmHg, or Diastolic (“lower pressure”) over 110mmHg on two repeated blood pressure measurements.

Other concerns – if there are any other concerns (e.g. severe headache, chest pain).


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Further Information

Crime Survey for England Wales

Drug Misuse Findings series. Self-reported drug use from the largest general population survey which provides excellent information for year on year comparisons.

View the survey

Licensing Act

The Licensing Act 2003 established a single licensing system for premises which supply alcohol, provide entertainment or provide late night refreshments; and it remains the key piece of legislation with updated guidance issued occasionally; the most recent update was in June 2013.

View guidance


NEPTUNE has been developed to improve clinical practice in the management of harms resulting from the use of club drugs and novel psychoactive substances. It is aimed at clinicians working in a range of frontline settings, including drug treatment and recovery services, emergency departments, sexual health services, primary care and mental health services.

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Report Illicit Drug Reactions

Public Health England has a site collating information about the reported effects of new psychoactive substances and other drugs known as the RIDR (Report Illicit Drug Reactions) dashboard

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Technical Standards for Places of Entertainment 2015

Reprinted with revisions 1 April 2019

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Toxbase is the primary clinical toxicology database of the National Poisons Information Service.

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Useful organisations


Campaign used by the Metropolitan Police Service and many other police forces (originated by Lincolnshire County Council) to help prevent and reduce sexual violence and vulnerability.

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Best Bar None

Best Bar None is an Accreditation Scheme with National Awards supported by the Home Office and the drinks industry which is aimed primarily at promoting responsible management and operation of alcohol licensed premises.

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The British Institute of Innkeeping

The BII is the professional body for the licensed trade. Its mission is to promote high standards of professionalism throughout the licensed retail sector and to provide information, skills and qualifications to help members run successful businesses.

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Do It London

Do It London provides a free condom distribution, outreach and rapid HIV testing service for men who have sex with men (MSM).

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Drinkaware runs e-learning around alcohol vulnerability for staff working on licensed premises.

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Festival Safe

Festival Safe is an online resource providing a range of advice and information on how to enjoy festivals safety; it includes a dedicated section on alcohol and other drugs.

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FRANK is the government’s drug helpline and website providing information about different substances and where to get help.

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The Global Drug Survey

GDS is an independent research company based in London which conducts annual large scale surveys of the world’s regular drug using communities. GDS use its data and expertise to create digital health applications delivering screening and brief interventions for drugs and alcohol. It also creates free online harm reduction resources and anonymous, confidential self-assessment tools in addition to a range of drug education materials for health and legal professionals, the entertainment industry and the general public.

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The GMI Partnership

GMI works across London to address the sexual health inequalities confronting diverse groups of men who have sex with (MSM), delivering the largest outreach and community-based HIV testing programme for MSM.

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Information Commissioner

You can find the independent Information Commissioner’s checklist for the proper operation of CCTV here:

View checklist

The Loop

The Loop is a not for profit Community Interest Company established in 2013 which provides drug safety testing, welfare and harm reduction services at nightclubs, festivals and other leisure events. It also provides staff training on drugs awareness, in-house welfare service delivery, the prevention of drug related harm at events, and the delivery of ethical ‘front of house’ drug safety testing services.

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Movement Strategies

Expert advice on crowd movement, safety and visitor experience.

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National Fire Chiefs Council

The NFCC provides a comprehensive event organiser’s checklist and a range of regularly updated documents to be incorporated into event management.

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Safer Sounds Partnership

The Safer Sounds Partnership is a London partnership which brings together the music industry to promote consistency of approach by all, information sharing and training for venues and promoters to create a safer event scene in London.
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Security Industry Authority

The Security Industry Authority is the organisation responsible for regulating the private security industry. It is an independent body reporting to the Home Secretary, under the terms of the Private Security Industry Act 2001 and has two main duties. One is the compulsory licensing of individuals undertaking designated activities within the private security industry; the other is to manage the voluntary Approved Contractor Scheme, which measures private security suppliers against independently assessed criteria.
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TICTAC Communications

TICTAC Communications Ltd. Has been a leading provider of drug identification and drug information to the criminal justice and healthcare sectors over the last 20 years, it is based in the medical school at St. George’s University of London.
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Medical and welfare specialist providers

Chill Welfare

Chill Welfare CIC was established as a social enterprise in 2015 in response to drug related deaths at music events and the changing trends in the use of alcohol, poly drugs, club drugs and legal highs. It provides a range of medical and welfare services.
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EDMS Medical

EDMS Medical provides specialist medical services for a broad range of events including nightclubs and festivals.
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Event Paramedic Services
Specialist medical provision for events including festivals.
Visit websitehttps://www.eventparamedicservices.com/

Festival Medical Services

FMS is a ‘not for profit‘ registered charity staffed by volunteers, delivering professional medical services at events throughout the country.
Visit website

Festival Welfare Services

FWS is a national registered charity which works with a bank of over 350 experienced professional volunteers to carry out a range of welfare related support services at events across the UK.
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Open Road

Open Road is an established Drug and Alcohol Recovery support charity in Essex and Medway with a specialism in providing welfare services to music festivals and the night time entertainment business.
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