IBJNews

Indiana panel approves new stage-rigging rules

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

An Indiana commission on Wednesday approved the state's first rules governing the type of temporary outdoor stage rigging involved in last summer's deadly State Fair stage collapse — regulations intended to protect the public while also insulating smaller events from burdensome requirements.

Members of the Indiana Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission voted unanimously in favor of the regulations, which board chairman David Hannum said take effect Thursday and will serve as a placeholder until permanent rules are in place.

The new rules apply to outdoor stage rigging structures that hold overhead lighting, sound and other equipment. The regulations cover only those structures that are not attached to a permanent stage and which are in place for no more than 45 days in any one year.

A state law passed during this year's legislative session directed the commission to adopt the temporary rules in the wake of the Aug. 13 stage rigging collapse that killed seven people and injured nearly 60 others before a scheduled Sugarland concert at the state fairgrounds.

That tragedy, which occurred when high winds toppled the rigging onto people below, exposed a loophole in Indiana law. Although state law had long required permanent stages to be inspected, temporary stage equipment erected on those stages was not regulated under state code.

Hannum said he believes the new rules, which require inspections for temporary stage rigging structures, will be in effect until Jan. 1, 2014. He said the rules "shouldn't be difficult at all" for venues and local officials to comply with.

"The biggest improvement is if there's something over the head of the public it will be certified as safe — it's not going to fall under any normal set of circumstances. That's what engineers do," he said.

One of the rule's main elements is requiring larger events with outdoor stages that feature freestanding overhead rigging to have a site plan prepared by an engineer that details the dimensions of those elements, and where audience members will be located, he said.

Smaller fairs and festivals would be exempt from most of the regulations, with the exception of preparing an evacuation plan, if they create a buffer zone around their stages that extends 8 feet beyond the height of the rigging to protect fans in case of a collapse. That exemption would apply only to temporary outdoor stage equipment that does not extend higher than 20 feet above the stage surface.

"What the rule says is that you can erect without an engineer's guidance if you assure that the public is kept completely safe. We wrote it so that there's no public allowed in the fall zone of anything you put overhead," Hannum said.

The temporary rules approved Wednesday do not include details of what officials need to include in their evacuation plans. Those specifics will be drafted by a legislative study committee that will meet over the summer to recommend permanent rules to the General Assembly.

State Fire Marshal Jim Greeson said his agency's staff has been inspecting temporary stage rigging structures since the General Assembly passed legislation March 16 requiring the commission to draft the temporary regulations. He said he's spoken to numerous county fair organizations since then to help them with their planning for this summer's events.

Greeson said his department has more than 40 code enforcement staff members as well as office staff trained in code enforcement to travel around the state to help inspect the temporary stage equipment in the coming months as the state's prime festival and fair season gets under way.

He said the state fire marshal's office also will be able to rely on trained staff in local jurisdictions to help with those reviews.

"I'm very confident that we'll be able to meet the need. We'll be busy no doubt ... We'll do what we need to do to make sure we're out there around the state looking at these structures and speaking to folks," Greeson said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Good Day I am Mr (Victoria Wright) from United state of America, i stayed in NEW YORK, and i have a broke up business, until i found this company email who help me to gain a loan for business,, and now i want to used this short medium to congratulate the below company for the fast and safe money they loan to me without any form of collateral, i loan 500,000USD from the company to save my business and lots more, i saw their mail on the internet, everyone always give testimony for what they did, so i quickly contacted them and they all did everything for me without stress and my money was sent to my account just 3 days later, i was surprise and i feel so glad, now i have a standard business control agent who help me, now i will advice those who need urgent loan to contact him at the bellow email:zenithfirm12@gmail.com

  2. NOTICE:This is to inform the general public that Vampires are real. My name is James Franklyn.,am an agent of vampire,am here to introduce our new world trend to you,a world of vampire where life get easier,we have made so many persons vampires and have turned them rich,you will be assured long life and prosperity,you shall be made to be very sensitive to mental alertness,stronger and also very fast,you will not be restricted to walking at night only even at the very middle of broad day light you will be made to walk.In case you are wildly oppressed by some unscrupulous persons we can still help you fight them.Your protection is assured immediately you join.Just contact the bellow email if you are interested we are here to attend to you anytime you want us. Contact the bellow email for more details. Email:vampirescreed@hotmail.com Sincerely: James Franklyn.

  3. Bravo! Someone else that is willing to speak the truth! Bravo!_____NBCSN is available in almost 2 MILLION more homes than just a few years ago, but Indycar STILL gets less total viewers than it did just a few years ago when NBC took over Versus. Attendance and ratings cratered with the end of season races (just when the title battle got "interesting" HAH!__________And now...new race in Basilia, where Miles celebrated the "rich history" of Indycar racing there. Rich history? What, 7 events in the 100 years of AOW? Yep, some history. Well, at least its an oval. It's not??? Are you kidding me??? Gosh darn road racin furriners.

  4. PURITY RAY LOAN OFFER........ Have you been denied by your banks,or are you in need of of an urgent loan to pay of your bills we are capable of giving loans @ cheaper rate to interested individuals, student, companies and members of the public in need of finance to settle bills, we do offer considerable loans which you can count on. For more information on our various types of loan,then you will have to contact PURITY RAY LOAN FIRM, to help you achieve your desire LOAN APPLICATION FORM TO BE FILLED BORROWERS INFORMATION * Full name:………………………. * SEX * ……………………………. * Country………………………….. * State:……………………………. * Land:…………………………….. * Occupation:…………………….. * phone number:…………………. * Telephone: ………………………….. * Age:………………………………. * Amount needed as loan:……… * Loan Duration:………………….. * Propose of Loan:……………….. * Annual revenue:………………… * Monthly Income:……………….. * Guarantee:………………………. * Payment: monthly or annually Email.....purityrayloanfirm@gmail.com Thank you and God bless Mr Purity Ray PURITY RAY LOAN FIRM we tend to serve you better

  5. Problem: most of the people responding to this article don't know about this service AT ALL! Why? Lack of awareness. This isn't IndyGo. This is CIRTA: might as well be the mattress company because they are asleep at the wheel - something like 3 directors over the last year? Playing with federal grant money is great! This "region" wants commuter rail service, has spent MILLIONS on Transportation studies yet can't even support a commuter bus line? This is largely for suburban riders to get to downtown - not for "service people to work in our hotels and restaurants" ! Get your head out of your backside!! These are professionals, students etc. that don't want to fight traffic, save some money on parking, gas, stress.... if CIRTA would put their federal money into widely promoting the sevive to Greenwood, Fishers & Carmel instead of finding directors and studies - this would be a successful service. Our family uses(d) it daily for the last several years - but the recent uncertainty & now unreliability due to cuts from Carmel has been a problem. Now, costs us an additional $350/month for gas & parking ( $4200/year) plus vehicle wear, service, environmental impact ... YES - this REGION needs this this type of service in order to keep growing and getting the people it needs to fill skilled positions in downtown Indianapolis. Think outside of your own car !!!

ADVERTISEMENT