|Picture Tweeted by The Afters|
- Workers appear to be wearing non-steel toe shoes, no hard-hats, and no gloves.
- The blue canopy is a light-weight 'pop-up' type with no anchorage or ballast weights.
- The main canopy truss was supported by telescoping material lifts (a more extensive discussion of this can be found at: www.jimonlight.com/2013/08/14/more-contradiction-in-the-shelby-stage-collapse-weather-equipment-negligence ) with no base anchors and had no cross-bracing, the canopy truss corners were lashed to the lifts with span-sets (seen in other pictures from http://www.wcnc.com/news/slideshows/Photos-Storms-blamed-for-Cleveland-Co-stage-collapse--219131761.html?gallery=y#/news/slideshows/Photos-Storms-blamed-for-Cleveland-Co-stage-collapse--219131761.html?gallery=y&img=7&c=y). A reproduction of the Material Lift operation manual that clearly shows that these devices should not be utilized for supporting outdoor stage canopies can be see at Jim Hutchison's JimOnLight site: www.jimonlight.com/2013/08/12/another-structure-falls-stage-roof-made-from-genie-towers-collapses-in-north-carolina
- The stage is very similar to the stage deemed 'unsafe' by Pat Benatar's band at an event a few weeks ago (http://theatresafetyblog.blogspot.com/2013/06/gut-feeling-can-prevent-accidents.html). Few cross-braces, no railings.
The band’s opening act, The Afters, was doing a sound check around 3:30 p.m. when the wind picked up and the stage started shaking.
“This storm suddenly came in and suddenly I hear 'get off the stage!'” said The Afters’ lead singer Josh Havens, in a cell phone video shot by MercyMe lead singer Bart Millard. “And we're running, jumping off the stage.”
MercyMe’s stage manager witnessed the collapse. Joel Bench is used to setting up and taking down stages – just not like this.
“The wind just picked up, the roof lifted a little bit,” said Bench. “Then it started tilting and just kind of eased down.”
“Luckily we had people watching and eyes on it, and they started screaming and everybody started running and took off safely,” he said.
Reports from the event tell of lightning in the area which should have caused the stage to have been evacuated long before the collapse occurred. Lightning strike and weather warning applications for smart phones and dedicated lightning strike monitor tools (http://theatresafetyblog.blogspot.com/2010/01/weather-safety-for-outdoor-venues.html) are commonly available and should ALWAYS be monitored, especially if there are visible adverse weather conditions.
John Huntington's ControlGeek site has a thorough run-down on the actual weather conditions:
Brittany Spangler, administrative assistant for the American Legion World Series, said “The World Series officials are all devastated, but in the end, it was safety first for the artists. We’re sad, but you can’t really stop Mother Nature. We weren’t aware that the winds were going to get that high.” Commentary: The venue should have had a weather service monitoring the local and regional weather.
Fortunately, no one was injured and the scheduled event that was expecting as many as