TORONTO (CelebrityAccess) A coroner’s inquest in Toronto regarding a fatal stage collapse prior to a Radiohead concert has wrapped, with a jury issuing 28 recommendations for staging safety.
The inquest was motivated by the death of drum tech Scott Johnson, who was onstage at Toronto’s Downsview Park prior to a Radiohead performance June 16, 2012. The stage gave way, crushing Johnson to death.
Jurors examining the circumstances surrounding the death have recommended that companies that build temporary stages for events in Ontario undergo licensing, similar according to the Canadian Press. Jurors also recommended that riggers working on venues in Ontario undergo a certification process similar to what is in place for electricians.
There were 26 other recommendations proposed that largely echoed similar proposals by the coroner’s counsel and other parties earlier this week, according to the CP. None are binding but Johnson’s father, Ken Johnson, said he will be monitoring the situation and suggested Radiohead would be as well.
“I think I would be disappointed” if the inquest didn’t lead to a change, he told reporters outside the coroner’s court on Wednesday.
He expressed relief that the legal process has come to a close after seven years.
“For us, we sort of accept that life is different and we expect that emotional rollercoaster. We don’t see a way out for that,” he said. “I think it just brings some closure, at least. There’s hardly a month gone by in the last seven years where I’m not involved in some dialogue about Scott and what’s happened, so I quite look forward to perhaps not having that dialogue.”
One recommendation is to create a provincially funded, permanent working group to examine the processes involved in the construction of temporary stages. The group would be established by December and would include Ken Johnson and experts from the entertainment and staging industries, according to the CP. The jury also recommended changes to the building code and occupational health and safety laws for temporary stages.
The plans for the stage at Downsview Park contained several errors, the wrong construction materials were used in building the roof structure, and there was no independent oversight on the project, according to testimony.