New Outdoor Stage Rules In Place
(Indianapolis, Ind.) – You won’t be able to get close enough to the stage to slap the hands of musicians any longer at outdoor shows in Indiana.
The Indiana Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission approved new rules for temporary stages Wednesday, going into effect Thursday through January 2014.
The move was prompted by last year’s Indiana State Fair stage collapse.
Seven people were killed and several dozen were hurt when the stage rigging was blown over by high winds at the State Fair in August. The incident happened right before the country band Sugarland was to perform.
Under the new rules, temporary rigging will have to be designed by an engineer to meet tougher standards and must be inspected by the state fire marshal’s office. Plans for the stages must be submitted to the office no less than 14 days before the event.
A person must also be assigned to oversee the safe dismantling of the stage and crowd evacuation in the event of severe weather.
Smaller stages often seen at county fairs and town festivals won’t be subject to the same stringent requirements, but there are new safeguards. Stages which have an overhead rigging less than 20 feet tall may be exempt if there is a buffer zone around the stage extending eight feet beyond the height of the rigging so that any collapse would fall short of landing in a crowd.
The new rules can be reviewed on the Indiana Department of Homeland Security’s website, http://www.in.gov/dhs/3759.htm.