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New York Firm Begins State Fair Stage Investigation

The Indiana State Fair Commission has hired a New York-based engineering firm to oversee the investigation into the deadly structure collapse last Saturday.

Mitch Daniels addressing fair crowd

Photo: Gretchen Frazee/WFIU

Mitch Daniels addresses a crowd at the Indiana State Fair in the aftermath of a weekend accident which took the lives of five people.

New York-based Thornton Tomasetti Engineers completed the first day of their investigation at the collapse site Tuesday.

Chicago office vice president Scott Nacheman says engineers are collecting and reviewing all evidence on site.

“Going forward we will begin a more in-depth, hands-on evaluation of the structure,” he said. “Looking at actual components, looking at what was constructed, whether it conforms to the actual design or not and most important, coordinating with all the other interested parties that want to gather the same information.”

State fair spokesman Andy Klotz says the commission is still reviewing evacuation procedures in the wake of the incident. However, Klotz says personnel made the decision to order an evacuation three minutes before strong winds hit and took down the stage overhang.

Nacheman says his firm’s probe will be completed by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, 18 victims of the state fair stage collapse remain in the hospital. 47 victims were either transported to or walked in to the hospital following Saturday night’s incident.

Two of them are at St. Vincent Hospital, nine at IU Health Methodist Hospital, three at Riley Hospital for Children and four at Wishard Hospital. Indiana State Police say they cannot release the conditions of the patients or the nature of their injuries. Five people died following the collapse Saturday night.

Network Indiana

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