At Least 40 Injured In Oktoberfest Tent Collapse

Wednesday, October 17th 2007, 7:57 pm
By: News On 6

Storms rip through Green Country causing damage and injuries. At least 40 people were hurt Wednesday night after a tent collapsed during the first night of Oktoberfest. Six in the Morning reporter Carina Sonn reports as many as 5,000 people were at the River West Festival Park for corporate night when strong winds and heavy rains blew through, causing two tents to collapse.

It appears a microburst picked up the Beer Garden tent, the largest one on the grounds, causing it to collapse, trapping many of those inside. Another tent also partially collapsed.

EMSA transported 25 people to all six of Tulsa’s hospitals. Most of the patients had non-life threatening injuries, including lacerations, head wounds, back pain and other traumatic injuries. As of Thursday morning, five patients were still hospitalized, three in serious conditions. It is estimated that 20 to 30 people took themselves to the hospital for treatment. There were an estimated 20 to 30 others with injuries, but those people left on their own to get medical treatment. The News On 6’s own reporter, Steve Berg, was injured when a pole hit him in the back of the head. He was taken to the hospital with a concussion.

Witnesses say they only had a split second to react to the falling tent, but they knew they needed to get everyone out.

"People immediately ran and pulled up the canvas, which was very heavy, and it was pouring down rain, and we held it up and people started coming out and people were looking for their loved ones," tent collapse victim Kendra Blevins said.

The News On 6 is told a company from Joplin is coming to fix the tents. The festival is scheduled to kick off for the public at 5 p.m. Thursday.

Watch the video: Tent Collapse At Oktoberfest