27 December 2023

Heat exhaustion killed Taylor Swift fan attending Rio concert – forensics report

27 December 2023

Heat exhaustion was the cause of death of a Brazilian fan who attended a concert of singer Taylor Swift in November, a forensics report obtained by The Associated Press shows.

Ana Clara Benevides, 23, passed out during Swift’s second song at the November 17 concert in Rio de Janeiro and died hours later at a local hospital.

Temperatures in the city that day were about 40C.

Fans lined up for hours before the show, and many accused organisers of failing to deliver enough water supplies for the more than 60,000 attending the concert at the Nilton Santos Stadium.

Representatives of the company organising the event will be called to testify

They said they were not allowed to take their own water into the stadium.

The report by Rio’s Forensic Medical Institute said Ms Benevides’ heat exposure led to a cardiorespiratory arrest.

It also said she did not have pre-existing conditions or substance abuse that could have led to her death.

The forensics expert who analysed her body said in the document she had “serious compromise of her lungs and sudden death” due to the heat.

One of Ms Benevides’ friends, who also attended the concert, told local media outlets in November they had been given water while waiting to enter the stadium.

Organisers T4F did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the AP.

Chief executive Serafim Abreu said in a video days after Ms Benevides’ death that the company would change its protocols for events under extreme heat.

He also said T4F would offer assistance to her family.

The office of Rio’s public prosecutor has opened a criminal investigation.

Rio police said in a statement on Wednesday that after the forensics report is analysed “representatives of the company organising the event will be called to testify”.

Ms Benevides’ death shook many in Brazil.

She had taken her first flight to travel from the country’s centre-west region to see her favourite singer.

In a statement posted on Instagram after the death, Swift said the case had left her with a “shattered heart”.

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