Fort Wayne Indiana Personal Injury Lawyer and Attorney Blog

Lawsuits for Wrongful Death & Punitive Damages filed after Indiana State Fairgrounds Stage Collapses

On August 19th, 2011, the first lawsuits for wrongful death and punitive damages were filed after the August 13th, 2011 stage collapse at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis, IN. The collapse at the Indiana State Fairgrounds occurred shortly before Sugar Land took the stage. The stage collapse resulted in concert injuries for over 40 people and the deaths of another six.

The attorney’s representing the victims argued that the “stage was erected without any inspections or permits," and alleged that organizers "did not reasonably exercise due care in the design, set-up, configuration, layout, and construction of the concert stage area." The complaint says the concert stage was overloaded with equipment, improperly configured, and did not meet safety guidelines, including those mandated by Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Additionally, the legal team believes the incident “was foreseeable and was preventable,” Weather data available two hours before the stage collapse showed severe thunderstorms approaching the area.  

A wrongful death lawsuit was filed on behalf of Tammy VanDam’s family and seeks in excess of $50 million in damages. Tammy VanDam age 42 died at the scene of the Indiana stage collapse and has left behind a 17-year-old daughter. “Tammy’s tragic death leaves her daughter without a mother’s love and guidance during the most vulnerable stage of her life.”

A second lawsuit has been filed for $10 million in damages on behalf of Beth Urschel who was severely injured after the Indiana concert stage collapsed. Beth Urschel was Tammy VanDam’s life partner. 

“Beth suffered serious and painful crush injuries along with traumatic amputation which will impair her for the rest of her life.” 

Beth’s concert injuries include a broken clavicle; tissue damage in her arm; bruising to her midsection; a severed little toe that was reattached; another toe that was crushed; and possibly a lacerated kidney. However, Beth’s greatest pain is the loss of her life partner Tammy VanDam.

During a press conference, Beth commented, “We had so many plans, so many things we wanted to do,” “It was her birthday weekend. I was taking her to see her favorite band.”

Defendants named in both suits include Mid-America Sound Corp., Lucas Entertainment Group, and Live Nation.

Read more about wrongful death and punitive damage lawsuit.

If you or a loved one has suffered a serious personal injury, we are here to help. We understand how confusing and difficult it can be to deal with insurance companies and medical providers after a life-altering injury. We limit the number of cases we take and focus on maximizing our clients’ financial recoveries.

The Sweeney Law Firm offers free consultations. You will never pay any attorney fees or case expenses unless we obtain a financial recovery in your legal case.