It seemed like a great day in St. Louis, Missouri – the St. Louis Cardinals just won and the Blues were playing in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Following the St. Louis Cardinals' impressive win over the Milwaukee Brewers, many fans continued the fun at an outdoor tent at a local bar, Kilroys, right next to Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Missouri. The St. Louis area was under a severe thunderstorm warning. According to news reports, just before 4:00 pm, strong winds lifted the tent, made of aluminum and wires. While over 150 people were in the tent when the storm hit, it is reported that 100 people were injured. Most of these people suffered only minor injuries but 16 were hospitalized with serious injuries and tragically, one person was killed. Although the cause of death and the injuries have not been released, it is certainly likely that the large pieces of aluminum caused or contributed to cause the injuries (perhaps spinal or head injuries). A video of the scene following the event shows stunned bystanders and even the injured being tended to. Weather reports indicate that the winds in the area at the time were only 50 MPH and the tent was designed to withstand winds of 90 miles per hour.
For good reason, the situation is being investigated by officials. It is possible that, under the law, this tragic event will be termed an "act of God". But it is also possible that some entity will be held liable. Most people will assume the bar, Kilroy's, is responsible for this death and the other injuries. However, because the tent was designed to withstand wind gusts of at 90 miles per hour, the tent manufacturer may also be liable. An investigation will determine whether or not the the tent was installed properly. It is quite possible that Kilroy's outsourced the rental and installation of the tent. Regardless of who is responsible, it must be remembered that incidents like this are preventable. Whenever inclement weather is likely, it is safest to not permit outside events. It is also prudent to ensure only a certain number of people are permitted under the tent at one time. Finally, installation of large tents like this must only be installed by professionals.
Lindsay Rakers, Missouri Injury Attorney.