Fans who endured a blistering heatwave to see Taylor Swift perform in Brazil last week have said they suffered ‘second-degree burns’ as they waited at the concert where one tragically died.
Writing on social media, several claimed to have needed medical treatment as temperatures soared to over 100F (37C) at the Estádio Olímpico Nilton Santos in Rio de Janeiro on Friday.
User @autoranya said she left the event with three severe burns as ‘the metal plates that covered the floor turned into hot plates at 40°C’. Another said the conditions were ‘inhumane’ inside the stadium, with crowds pushing up against each other.
‘When they opened the entrance, I was pushed and fell to the ground HOT. I got two second-degree burns that wouldn’t stop burning in the sun.’
Fans have claimed they were banned from bringing water into the stadium on Friday, as Taylor Swift directed staff to hand out bottles. The heat led to Saturday’s show being postponed, and a fan was reported to have died after collapsing.
Ana Clara Benevides Machado, 23, collapsed in the front row and reportedly went into cardiac arrest. She was taken to hospital where she suffered a second cardiac arrest and died.
Taylor Swift, 33, is currently in the middle of her long-anticipated Eras tour, parading five continents with 151 shows between March 2023 and December next year.
User autoranya said she suffered second-degree burns in the blistering heat on Friday
‘When they opened the entrance, I got pushed and fell to the floor HOT! I got two second-degree burns that wouldn’t stop burning in the sun,’ a fan said
Taylor Swift performs during night two of her Rio shows on November 19, 2023
Fans have complained the conditions were unbearable at Friday’s event as the city soared to temperatures locals said felt like 59C due to the high humidity.
In one post, sharing their experience, a fan said that Taylor’s team ‘was there investigating’ throughout ‘and her head of security was very worried’.
‘He asked them to take care of me quickly and did everything he could to help me because I was crying in pain,’ she said.
‘When I went inside, more people burned. People vomiting, fainting… the doctor did not want to confirm the burns! [He] was under pressure! A woman who was there didn’t want to help me second time because I said I already had gone… absurd.’
Fan Kléssia Menezes told R7 TV: ‘I didn’t imagine that my dream could turn into a nightmare.
She said she had been stuck on one of the ramps to a VIP area as security officers blocked the entrance.
Once allowed through, people started running and she fell on a hot metallic floor that burned her leg and back, she said.
More than 1,000 people reportedly fainted during the set, according to firefighters.
During the set, Swift was forced to stop the event and called for water to be distributed among concertgoers.
In one video, she is seen saying: ‘There’s people that need water right here, maybe 30, 35, 40 feet back.
‘So whoever is in charge of giving them that, just make sure that happens. Can I get a signal that you know where they are?’
Local reports claimed bringing water into the stadium was prohibited, and fans could expect to pay R$8 ($1.60) on a small 305ml cup of water.
The Public Prosecutor’s Officer and consumer protection agencies have since launched investigations into possible neglect on the behalf of organisers T4F.
Taylor Swift was in Rio de Janeiro for three nights between Friday and Monday, having made the decision to postpone Saturday’s show ‘due to the extreme temperatures in Rio’.
Taylor was unaware of the tragedy during her performance and has since issued a statement expressing her devastation over Benevides’ death
More than 1,000 fans were reported to have fainted during the event on Friday
Fans on Twitter criticised the organisation of the event, defending Taylor Swift – who called for water to be shared out
Taylor Swift also took to Instagram to say she was ‘overwhelmed by grief’ as news emerged of the death of Ana Clara Benevides Machado, who reportedly collapsed in the front row during the second song on November 17.
The artist said: ‘I can’t believe I’m writing these words but it is with shattered heart that I say we lost a fan earlier tonight before my show.
‘I can’t even tell you how devastated I am by this.
‘There’s very little information I have, other than the fact that she was so incredibly beautiful and far too young.’
She said: ‘I’m not going to be able to speak about this from stage because I feel overwhelmed by grief when I even try to talk about it.’
Rio’s Municipal Health Department said Benevides, who, according to a friend, passed out during Swift’s second song, ‘Cruel Summer,’ experienced cardiorespiratory arrest, but the exact cause of her death is not yet known.
In an interview on November 19, the girl’s father said his daughter had ‘left for a dream and come back dead’.
Weiny Machado, 53, said his daughter was ‘happy and intelligent’, ‘about to graduate in Psychology next April, saving money.’
‘I have no words to express my pain. She left home to fulfil a dream and came back dead.’
T4F, the organisers, previously expressed their ‘sincere condolences’ to Ana’s family and friends in a statement on Saturday.
They said she ‘felt unwell and was promptly attended to by the team of firefighters and paramedics’ before being taken to the Salgado Filho Hospital nearby.
They also said that water stations would be provided at later shows – before the artist postponed.
It comes after Ana Clara Benevides, 23, suffered a cardiac arrest and died after attending a Swift concert in Rio
Concerned: In the clip filmed by an audience member, Taylor can be heard responding to the calls for water by asking those in front of her to assist
Swifties: Fans in the audience on Friday at Estadio Olimpico Nilton Santos
A second Taylor Swift fan later died in Rio de Janerio after being fatally stabbed after he went to see the pop star’s Eras Tour over the weekend.
Gabriel Milhomem Santos was killed just hours after he attended the world-wide tour at Nilton Santos Olympic Stadium in the Brazilian city.
The 25-year-old, who was wearing a ‘Swifities’ friendship bracelet, was reportedly knifed to death as he rested on the famous Copacabana beach in the early hours of Sunday morning.
It is understood Taylor Swift will now be flying back to the US for Thanksgiving, before returning to Brazil for the Sao Paolo shows on November 24.