INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana State Fair stage collapse is prompting new national guidelines designed to increase safety at similar outdoor events.
The Event Safety Guide is an outgrowth of the collapse and other incidents involving outdoor events. On Aug. 13, 2011, seven people died after a temporary stage collapsed just before a Sugarland concert at the fair.
The disaster caught the attention of the entertainment industry—and representatives came to Indianapolis as part of a national push to standardize safety guidelines around the U.S.
The guide—from a group called the Event Safety Alliance of USA—also cited stage collapses in other locations, including Alberta, Ottawa and Toronto in Canada; Tulsa, Okla.; and the city of Hasselt in Belgium. The group refers to inclement weather, including gusting winds and lightning strikes that can present safety hazards.
The United Kingdom has a similar safety manual called the “Purple Guide” that has been in use since 1999. The group that put together the Event Safety Guide leaned on those guidelines while working to establish their own.
The guide’s standards are recommendations representing “best practices” for the industry, according to the guide. They will not, however, be mandatory.
The guidelines are currently in a review and comment phase that will conclude in August. The finished guide is expected by fall.