Teen’s drug OD death at Kelowna’s Centre of Gravity festival deemed accidental

Coroner’s Report indicates that the teen took MDA that she thought was ecstasy, suffered cardiac arrest

The Kamloops teen who died at last year’s Centre of Gravity Festival suffered a seizure and cardiac arrest due to acute drug toxicity, according to a BC Coroner’s report released Thursday.

Adison Paige Davies’s June 27, 2018 death was deemed accidental in the report and attributed to a toxic level of the drug MDA, which is also known as methylenedioxyamphetamine.

“This drug has a stimulant effect with a risk of leading to a sudden increased demand on the coronary arteries which supply the heart muscle, potentially resulting in any one of a number of cardiovascular emergencies, including stroke or heart failure,” reads the report from Adele Lambert, a provincial coroner.

READ MORE: COG CANCELLED

Lambert’s report indicates that Davies was a healthy young woman who consumed a tablet of what she thought to be ecstasy.

She started to have difficulty breathing and a seizure followed.

While medical attendants at the festival tried to help, she soon became unresponsive and died.

“Street drugs often contain adulterating agents such as diluents and/or unexpected psychoactive substances,” Lambert said.

“For example, MDMA (ecstasy or Molly) can also be sold as MDA (sally, sass or sassafras) which has more stimulant and hallucinogenic properties. When unexpected, such effects can potentially pose increased risk for consumers.”

READ MORE: TEEN DIES AT FESTIVAL

An April 2018 B.C. Coroner’s report looking into illicit drug overdose deaths recommended that drug checking services become more readily available. Center of Gravity did not provide such services.

The BC Centre on Substance Use supported drug checking at music festivals and events throughout 2018. From the 381 drug checks done at these events 180, or 47.2 per cent, were expected to contain MDMA. Of these 15 were found to contain MDA and one sample was found to contain a mixture of both MDA and MDMA.

The Centre of Gravity Festival was cancelled for 2019 with both the City and Festival organizers saying it was a mutual decision.

Of note, on the Kelowna paramedics have also outlined a significant increase in overdoses during party weekends in Kelowna.

There were 17 reported overdoses during the July 27 weekend, the same weekend Centre of Gravity was held in City Park.

Davies was described as a bright young girl who was excited to one day have a career in medicine.

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