UPDATE: A 5th person has died. Jennifer Nettles released a statement, saying that Sugarland is “stunned and heartbroken for the fans and their families in Indiana. We hold those injured in our prayers at this very sad time. There are no words. It is tragic.” Also, added tweets from Idols reacting to the tragedy. Plus, a new video of the stage collapse
This is terrible news. A gust of wind brought down a stage at the Indiana Stage fair tonight, killing at least 4 and injuring 24. The country band, Sugarland, were about to take the stage when it happened. The video at the bottom of the page shows the stage suddenly collapse. Read a news report from CNN below:
(CNN) — A massive gust of wind brought down a stage at the Indiana State Fair on Saturday night, killing at least four and injuring 24, officials said.
Authorities said they feared more casualties.
“A big gust of wind came through. You could see a lot of people panicking. All the scaffolding and speakers — all that came crashing down — and the whole stand just collapsed, ” said Aaron Richman, who witnessed the collapse at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis.
Allison Hoehn said many rushed to those trapped after the stage crumbled.
“We tried to get down to help, but no one was moving, ” Hoehn said. “The storm came on so fast and the stage just snapped like a toothpick.
“Everyone rushed to help and we saw people searching and pulling people out. (I) saw five people go away on stretchers. It was amazing how many people ran in to try to lift the scaffolding.”
The Indianapolis Department of Public Safety posted on its Twitter page the death toll and said that 24 people had been taken to area hospitals.
Two local hospitals placed the number of injured at 43, including some walk-in patients.
Capt. Brad Weaver, commander of special operations for the Indiana State Police, said he took the stage at 8:45 p.m. to warn the audience of severe weather.
Ten minutes later, the wind gust blew through.
He said he “saw the framework from the stage start to come over.”
He said he and others took cover behind a trailer, which was also struck by debris from the stage.
Singer Sara Bareilles had finished her set at the Hoosier Lottery Grandstand stage when the wind knocked down the rigging on to the stage.
“I’m speechless and feel so helpless, ” Bareilles said on her Twitter page. “My heart aches for the lives lost.”
The show’s headliner, country music duo Sugarland, was to take the stage next.
“We are stunned and heartbroken for the fans and their families in Indiana.” said Sugarland singer Jennifer Nettles. “We hold those injured in our prayers at this very sad time. There are no words. It is tragic.”
Thoughts and prayers go out to those affected and their friends and families.
A few Idols posted their condolences on twitter.
David Cook tweeted, “Awful news about what happened at the Indiana State Fair. Thoughts are with all those affected.”
Jordin Sparks tweeted, “OMG. I have no words. Please #pray for those who were at the fair in Indy. ”
Kelly Clarkson posted, “Just saw video footage of the stage collapsing at Sugarland’s show in Indiana. Oh my gosh that is maybe one of scariest things I’ve ever seen. I pray everybody on their crew and the band is okay. …I’m not sure what news is correct or not but I heard the people that died or got injured were fans. Please keep all of their families in your prayers. What a horrible thing to happen.”
Paul McDonald tweeted, “Very sad news about the stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair. My thoughts and prayers go out to all the victims and their families.”
Didi Benami tweeted, “praying for everyone at the concert in Indianapolis. Oh my Goodness. I’m speechless. Praying for healing for those lost & those injured.”
Chris Daughtry tweeted, “Wow! Just saw video of Indiana State fair stage collapse! We’re played that stage! So horrible!”
Crystal Bowersox tweeted, “Omg so sad for the fans and friends and families…”
Kris Allen tweets, “Horrible what happened at the Indy State Fair. Praying for the families of the people that lost their loved ones.”