Stage for Madonna show collapses, killing 1

July 16, 2009 5:06:05 PM PDT
The roof of a stage being built for a Madonna concert in the French port city of Marseille collapsed Thursday, leaving one worker dead and nine injured, city officials said. The roof at the Stade Velodrome stadium fell apart on top of several workers.

One worker was killed and two of the injured were seriously hurt, said Maurice Di Nocera, Marseille city councilor in charge of major events, said on France-Info radio. The seriously injured were an American and a Briton, said the Marseille central fire department. The killed worker was French. No identities were released.

Four other people had multiple injuries, including fractured bones, and three others suffered light injuries, the fire department said. All of the injured were taken to local hospitals.

Di Nocera said the roof had been about two-thirds complete when it collapsed gradually on top of several workers.

"Since it did not collapse right away, that allowed several people to get out, to avoid being hit," he said.

The cause of the roof collapse was not clear. Police and emergency officials cordoned off the area.

Madonna's "Sticky & Sweet" tour was due to arrive in Marseille on Sunday, but the concert was canceled because "rebuilding a stage, it's not possible," Di Nocera said.

Marseille prosecutors asked the regional safety agency to investigate the cause of the accident.

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