Dad's "closure" after inquest of Rotherham drum tech Scott Johnson ends

By Michael Upton | 11/04/2019

Dad's 'closure' after inquest of Rotherham drum tech Scott Johnson ends

THE FATHER of Rotherham sound technician Scott Johnson, who was killed in a stage collapse in Canada almost seven years ago, has been invited to join a panel working to uphold concert safety standards.

Ken Johnson attended Scott’s three-week inquest in Toronto, which concluded yesterday.

Scott (pictured above), a former pupil of Brinsworth Comprehensive School who worked as a drum techician, died after a stage set collapsed just hours before a Radiohead concert at Downsview Park in Toronto in June 2012. 

The inquest jury made 26 recommendations aimed at preventing future tragedies and suggester “riggers” working in performance venues in the state of Ontario undergo a certification process.

Mr Johnson, of Hickleton, said he would be checking to ensure the non-binding recommendations were acted upon.

They jury recommended the formation of a permanent working group overseeing temporary stage construction and other processes in the entertainment industry, of which Mr Johnson, a scaffolding expert himself, will be a member.

Mr Johnson said the inquest had been a distraction from his grief and something to focus on but that its conclusion brought some relief for he and wife Sue.

“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 told reporters outside court.

“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.”

Scott was on-stage when the stage roof collapsed on him and several others.
The inquest concluded Scott died from head injuries. 

Evidence was given at the hearing that the stage plans were faulty, wrong materials were used and no-one independent was in charge of overseeing the construction project.

Promoter Live Nation, contractor Optex Staging and engineer Domenic Cugliar, were all charged over the incident but not brought to trial after a judge ruled proceedings has been delayed too long.

Radiohead drummer Phil Selway said the band had been left with a sense of a “complete failure of the justice system” by the case.

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