story_stage_collapse.jpgBy now, most people have heard about the stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair last Saturday just prior to to the band Sugarland’s performance. The tradegy has left five concert-goers dead and dozens injured. But who is at fault? Most likely, the event staff will be held at least partially at fault as they likely assisted in the stage set up. In most states, there is a complete defense for situations like this where an “act of God” caused the injuries. But here, it is likely that the strong winds were foreseeable with an outdoor concert in Indiana. Another argument that is sometimes available is that the individuals assumed the risk. While such an argument may be sound in situations such as skydiving, certainly an individual attending a country music concert does not expect to be at risk from the stage collapsing.
Sometimes, the bands/artists insist on bringing their own stage sets and/or insist on setting up their own stage. If that is the case, the band Sugarland may face some liability. What is certain is that the stage should have withstood the winds in the area. Someone is liable for this tragedy. Hopefully, those responsible for the stage and the set-up will cooperate in the investigation and these families will get some answers about what happened on Saturday. Of course, no one meant for this to happen and it seems clear that Sugarland is struggling with the news of the deaths and injuries.
Crews sifting through debris, search for answers to stage collapse,, August 14, 2011.


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