Four Killed, Dozens Injured as Stage Collapses at Sugarland Concert In Indiana
Wow this is terrible!!!! Fans were at the Indiana State Fair waiting for Sugarland to take the stage when the weather became rough and caused the stage to collapse.
INDIANAPOLIS – A stage collapsed during a powerful storm at the Indiana State Fair on Saturday, sending steel scaffolding into the terrified crowd below and killing at least four people among fans awaiting a performance by the country band Sugarland.
The collapse came moments after an announcer warned of the advancing storm and gave instructions on what to do in event of an evacuation. Witnesses said a wall of dirt, dust and rain blew up quickly as a gust of high wind toppled the rigging. People ran amid screams and shouts, desperate to get out of the way.
Hundreds of concert-goers rushed afterward amid the chaos to tend to the injured, many with upraised arms seeking to lift heavy beams, lights and other equipment that blew down onto the crowd. Many of the injured were in the VIP section closest to the stage. Emergency crews set up a triage center in a tunnel below the grandstand at the Indianapolis fairgrounds.
About 40 people were injured, including at least one child, WTHR reported. Witnesses reported seeing many people with head and neck injuries and broken bones.
Todd Harper, spokesman for Wishard Memorial Hospital in the city, said later Sunday that at least 18 patients were brought in. He said their problems ranged from head injuries and bone fractures to lacerations and other cuts and bruises. He said those injuries were not life-threatening and conditions ranged from fair to critical.
One was a 7-year-old child, he said, but didn't elaborate further.
"We set up a command center and a page was sent out to staff to call the command center," he said, adding the hospital hadn't seen such a sudden influx of patients since a tornado outbreak in 2000. "This was unusual. We can't think of an incident that compared to this mass of people" arriving.
Indiana State Police 1st Sgt. Dave Bursten said the number of injured could rise because some people may have taken themselves to hospitals.
Bursten said the injuries ranged from cuts and scrapes to "very serious injuries" and that it was a "very likely possibility" that the death toll could also climb.
Emergency crews continued to search the fairgrounds early Sunday to ensure there were no other injured concert-goers who might have wandered off after the collapse, Bursten said.
Fair officials canceled all activities Sunday. The fair, which runs through Aug. 21, was expected to resume Monday with a service honoring the victims, he said.
Sugarland tweeted about the incident about an hour after it happened.
"We are all right. We are praying for our fans, and the people of Indianapolis. We hope you'll join us. They need your strength," the band said.