Indiana State Fair Hires Engineering Firm to Investigate Sugarland Stage Collapse
After Saturday’s storm toppled a performance stage killing five people, and injuring more than 40, the Indiana State Fair announced Tuesday that it hired an engineering firm to look into the collapse.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Scott Nacheman of international engineering firm Thornton Tomasetti, Inc. will head up the investigation. He’s based out of the company’s Chicago offices.
"Many straight-line winds, microbursts, tornadic events, are things that are really not considered in the building codes," Nachman said in a press conference Tuesday in regard to severe weather conditions causing of the stage’s collapse.
"This was a freakish act of God, and I don't know how it could have been prevented," Indiana State Fair spokesperson, Andy Klotz, said. "We will look at everything we have in our policy to make sure we refine it."
The Thornton Tomasetti firm was also involved with the investigation of the World Trade Center towers’ collapse after the buildings suffered airplane attacks on September 11, 2001, as well as the Minneapolis Interstate 35W bridge collapse in 2007.
Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels also said Tuesday that he will look into legislation requiring the inspection of temporary structures like the State Fair, but cautioned that any mandate would be limited in scope, reports the Associated Press.
Eighteen people remain hospitalized after 60-70 mile-an-hour winds leveled a performance stage meant for Sugarland Saturday. Singer, Sara Bareilles had exited the same stage after finishing her set just 30 minutes prior.