Music Fest organizers review safety procedures - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Music Fest organizers review safety procedures after Indy stage collapse

A stage collapse that killed five people at the Indiana State Fair has prompted local event organizers to review their own safety procedures. A stage collapse that killed five people at the Indiana State Fair has prompted local event organizers to review their own safety procedures.

(WMC-TV) - A stage collapse that killed five people at the Indiana State Fair has prompted local event organizers to review their own safety procedures.

Tuesday, Beale Street Music Festival spokesperson Dianne Hampton said the stage collapse in Indiana is causing festival organizers here to re-examine the safety practice manual for Memphis in May.

"We already have a plan in place, but of course when something like this happens you pull out the plan and review it," Hamton said.

The collapse in Indiana happened when violent winds caused the stage to fall forward onto the crowd.  According to Hampton, at Memphis in May, every attempt is made to keep crowds a safe distance from the stage.

"You never say never, but it is part of the precautions we take to insure the crowd's safety," she said.

Hampton said care is also taken to make sure stages are sound and sturdy. In fact, the stages you see at Memphis in May are rated to withstand winds up to 90 miles per hour.

And the music fest is no stranger to bad weather. In fact, in 2003 and 2010, officials had to close the festival because of tornado warnings."

Hampton said event organizers monitor weather conditions so that they can react to bad weather before it hits the festival area.

"We have constant contact during bad weather with all of the area meteorologists," she said. "Dave Brown is my best friend during the month of May to find out, to keep abreast, of what's going on."

Memphis in May officials say they have not yet finished their review of the festival's safety procedures.

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