Sugarland Trial Date Set in Indiana State Fair Stage Collapse
A date has been set for the trial that will decide if Sugarland and various concert production companies should be held accountable for the stage collapse that killed seven and injured dozens at the Indiana State Fair in 2011.
The duo were about to take the stage at the fair on Aug. 13, 2011, when winds of 60 MPH swept into the area. They decided to postpone their performance until the winds died down. Just minutes later, the entire stage scaffolding came crashing to the ground in one of the worst concert disasters in recent memory.
ABC affiliate WRTV in Indianapolis, Ind., reports that court proceedings will begin in February of 2014. Under Indiana state law, the deadline to file a lawsuit after such an incident is two years, meaning that survivors and the families of those who were killed have just one week left to file their claims.
WRTV reports that victims of the catastrophe have already received $11 million in payments from tort claims, as well as money approved by the state legislature. Almost half a million dollars in public donations has also been paid out.
Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush of Sugarland have given extensive depositions, but could be deposed again before the end of the year. They have denied responsibility for the incident, calling it “a true accident, or an act of God,” according to CNN. In court documents, the band said they “had nothing to do with the construction of the venue,” and that the scaffolding collapse was due to a “gust of wind of unprecedented intensity.”