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Sugarland, Concert Promoters Reach Settlement With Stage Collapse Victims

Rick Diamond, Getty Images

The members of Sugarland, Live Nation and other defendants have announced a settlement with the victims of a deadly stage collapse that took place at the Indiana State Fair in 2011.

The Associated Press reports that Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush, concert promoter Live Nation and 16 additional defendants have agreed to pay out $39 million to settle claims from the incident, which killed seven people and left nearly 100 more injured after high winds caused stage rigging to collapse at a Sugarland concert at the fair in August of 2011, sending the roof of the stage falling into the audience.

Subsequent investigations concluded that the rigging didn’t meet industry safety standards, and also found that fair officials did not have a fully developed emergency plan. Some of the plaintiffs previously reached an $11 million settlement with the state.

Kenneth J. Allen, attorney for the plaintiffs, announced the new settlement on Friday (Dec. 19). He declined to disclose the amount each defendant agreed to pay, citing a confidentiality clause. He said the settlement money will be distributed based on the severity of injury and whether a death was involved.

“Those that have lost loved ones will never have the harm erased from their lives,” Allen stated.

According to Allen, one of the defendants, ESG Security, was not part of the settlement. That case could still go to trial in 2015. Lawsuits against all other defendants were dismissed Friday.

A lawyer for Live Nation declined the AP’s request for comment. Sugarland’s lawyer did not immediately return a call asking for comment.

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