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Indiana panel backs stage-rigging rules extension

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 An Indiana House committee on Tuesday backed a two-year extension of temporary outdoor stage rigging regulations developed following the deadly 2011 State Fair stage collapse.

The House public safety committee voted 11-0 to send to the full House the bill that would keep temporary rules approved last summer by the Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission in place through 2015.

Bill sponsor Rep. Robert Cherry, R-Greenfield, said the extension will give the safety commission time to hold public hearings and take other steps needed to adopt permanent rules.

The temporary rules — set to expire at the end of this year — require a buffer zone keeping people out of an area around temporary outdoor rigging structures that hold overhead lighting, sound and other equipment. That buffer zone extends 8 feet beyond the height of the rigging to protect fans in case of a collapse.

Cherry said he believed the two-year extension would give the safety commission an opportunity to consider other measures.

"I think we tried to address everything we needed in the emergency rules, but you never know and that's why we want to give them more time," Cherry said.

Legislators directed the commission last year to adopt the temporary rules in the wake of the August 2011 stage rigging collapse that killed seven people and injured nearly 60 others before a scheduled Sugarland concert at the state fairgrounds.

That collapse, 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.

State Fire Marshal Jim Greeson told the House committee that the temporary rules had exceptions for small stages typically used for events and entertainment that allowed community festivals to continue without additional costs.

Cherry said he believe temporary regulations improved safety while overcoming doubts from organizers of smaller fairs and festivals.

"The fire marshal has worked well with them," Cheery said. "I've had zero complaints."

No one spoke against the bill during Tuesday's meeting.

The bill would add inflatable slides and bounce houses used at public events to those amusement rides that must pass safety inspections before being opened. The proposal also would give the state homeland security agency director the authority to set rules for emergency response plans for outdoor events where rigging equipment is used.

"It is more than the stage, it is how they handle the mass crowd, to get people out and make sure everyone's safe," Cherry said.

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  1. Of what value is selling alcoholic beverages to State Fair patrons when there are many families with children attending. Is this the message we want to give children attending and participating in the Fair, another venue with alooholic consumption onsite. Is this to promote beer and wine production in the state which are great for the breweries and wineries, but where does this end up 10-15 years from now, lots more drinkers for the alcoholic contents. If these drinks are so important, why not remove the alcohol content and the flavor and drink itself similar to soft drinks would be the novelty, not the alcoholic content and its affects on the drinker. There is no social or material benefit from drinking alcoholic beverages, mostly people want to get slightly or highly drunk.

  2. I did;nt know anyone in Indiana could count- WHY did they NOT SAY just HOW this would be enforced? Because it WON;T! NOW- with that said- BIG BROTHER is ALIVE in this Article-why take any comment if it won't appease YOU PEOPLE- that's NOT American- with EVERYTHING you indicated is NOT said-I can see WHY it say's o Comments- YOU are COMMIES- BIG BROTHER and most likely- voted for Obama!

  3. In Europe there are schools for hairdressing but you don't get a license afterwards but you are required to assist in turkey and Italy its 7 years in japan it's 10 years England 2 so these people who assist know how to do hair their not just anybody and if your an owner and you hire someone with no experience then ur an idiot I've known stylist from different countries with no license but they are professional clean and safe they have no license but they have experience a license doesn't mean anything look at all the bad hairdressers in the world that have fried peoples hair okay but they have a license doesn't make them a professional at their job I think they should get rid of it because stateboard robs stylist and owners and they fine you for the dumbest f***ing things oh ur license isn't displayed 100$ oh ur wearing open toe shoes fine, oh there's ONE HAIR IN UR BRUSH that's a fine it's like really? So I think they need to go or ease up on their regulations because their too strict

  4. Exciting times in Carmel.

  5. Twenty years ago when we moved to Indy I was a stay at home mom and knew not very many people.WIBC was my family and friends for the most part. It was informative, civil, and humerous with Dave the KING. Terri, Jeff, Stever, Big Joe, Matt, Pat and Crumie. I loved them all, and they seemed to love each other. I didn't mind Greg Garrison, but I was not a Rush fan. NOW I can't stand Chicks and all their giggly opinions. Tony Katz is to abrasive that early in the morning(or really any time). I will tune in on Saturday morning for the usual fun and priceless information from Pat and Crumie, mornings it will be 90.1

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