Although the tragic events happened two years ago, lawsuits are still being filed for damages resulting from the Sugarland concert stage collapse at the 2011 Indiana State Fair. The outdoor show stage area was suffering extensive wind gusts at the time. The temporary roof structure of the stage collapsed and landed among the crowds. Seven people were killed in the event and nearly 60 were injured.
The Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company is the latest to file suit, only moments before the statute of limitations expired on its claims. The company was responsible for insuring the musical instruments and equipment of the bands, which all suffered extensive damage during the collapse. The lawsuit alleges negligence and products liability. The terms of the lawsuit allege that the stage rigging was not properly erected. The suit is naming a group of parties who were responsible for varying stages of constructing, erecting, and maintaining the stage.
Sugarland, a country music duo, had not yet appeared on stage but were finishing their warm-ups when the collapse occurred. Two months after the accident the band played a free concert in Indiana to support those affected by accident. A court date of February 2014 has been scheduled to determine whether the two members of Sugarland, Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush, may have any share of liability for the incidences of that evening.
The last figures show that the state of Indiana has already paid out approximately $11 million to those who suffered as a result of the accident. The companies involved with the stage, as well as Sugarland, may end up paying out much more. Safety reports completed after the incident revealed that the stage rigging failed to meet industry safety standards and there was not a proper emergency plan to mitigate potential damage.
Lawsuits stemming from concert injuries are becoming increasingly more prevalent in 2013. For example, a New Jersey man has sued a rock band, ‘Senses Fail’, a production company, and a venue operator for injuries he sustained as a result of an aggressive mosh pit. According to the lawsuit, the plaintiff was pulled into the mosh pit against his will and thrown around and battered, ultimately suffering a sprained shoulder and injured knee. The deciding factor of the case seems to hinge on whether the three defendants attempted to prevent “aggressive, intoxicated, or impaired individuals from forming a mosh pit” with the knowledge that this band’s shows often inspire aggressive behavior in the crowds.
Legal actions taken against the punk metal group ‘Bring Me The Horizon’ for the injuries sustained by a 12-year-old girl in a mosh pit during one of the band’s Warped Tour performances has led to a new standard of ensuring safety. The band’s frontman tweeted that as part of the legal action taken, the band is no longer being sued but he is restricted from saying or instigating moshing and other similar violent acts of crowd actions.
The Indianapolis personal injury attorneys at the Law Firm of Parr Richey Frandsen Patterson Kruse remember the tragic night that rocked Indianapolis and spread nationally through the news. Concerts have been one of America’s best recreational entertainment activities, and the hope that stems from that accident and ensuing suits is that there will be a concerted effort to improve safety methods and procedures to avoid future accidents. If you or a loved one has suffered as a result of an experience at an entertainment venue, you may be entitled to compensation or awards for your injuries. Whether under the theory of negligence or premise liability, we can explore your case and bring those accountable to justice and hopefully prevent future harms.
If you or a loved one has suffered at a concert or venue, we may be able to help – for a free confidential consultation, call (888) 532-7766 or contact us online.
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