Durham council to investigate cause of cricket stand collapse which left three injured

A section of the floor fell away during the match at the England v West Indies game at the Emirates Riverside Ground in Chester-le-Street. Photo by Sharon Fleet.
A section of the floor fell away during the match at the England v West Indies game at the Emirates Riverside Ground in Chester-le-Street. Photo by Sharon Fleet.

Durham council has confirmed it will investigate the cause of the partial collapse of a stand at Durham County Cricket Club which left a female spectator with a broken leg.

Three members of the crowd reported injuries after a section of the North-East Terrace gave way during England's one-off Twenty20 international against West Indies on Saturday night.

Police and stewards moved people out of the stand following the incident at the Emirates Riverside Ground in Chester-le-Street. Photo by Sharon Fleet.

Police and stewards moved people out of the stand following the incident at the Emirates Riverside Ground in Chester-le-Street. Photo by Sharon Fleet.

In a statement released today, the council confirmed it will hold an investigation to "understand the cause of the incident and any ramifications for future events".

One remains in hospital and two others injured after section of stand collapses at international cricket match

The council's planning development officer Stephen Reed said: "A pre-event operational check, which looked at security, stewarding and the availability of emergency services, was carried out at the Emirates Stadium in the run-up to this fixture.

"We can confirm that we will be investigating, along with other relevant agencies, to understand the cause of the incident and any ramifications for future events."

The empty stand following the evacuation. Photo by Sharon Fleet.

The empty stand following the evacuation. Photo by Sharon Fleet.

The terrace, previously used at the 2012 Olympics, became unstable towards the end of Saturday's match.

The North East Ambulance Service responded to a 999 call and took the woman to Newcastle's RVI Hospital, where she was admitted and kept overnight.

A further 200 people were evacuated to other areas of the ground from the stand which, a club spokesman has confirmed, was used for the 2013 Ashes and has been in place at Chester-le-Street ever since being acquired from the site of the beach volleyball competition at Horse Guards Parade during London 2012.

Sharon Fleet, who works as a PA and lives in Hartlepool, was among the crowd after she took her mum Shirley Frankland, 73, to the game as part of a birthday present.

"The 50-year-old: “We saw a lot of commotion and we thought someone had fallen down drunk but when we looked, the floor had given way just a level along from us.

"The empty stand following the evacuation.

“I looked and saw a man whose leg was trapped and the lady had been sat in the front seat and fallen and there were paramedics around her.

“People were grabbing on to the man to help him try and free his leg and he was hopping about because he couldn’t stand on it.”

Durham have already begun an internal investigation into the cause of the accident, which includes taking witness statements from stewards and those who gave medical assistance.

The club will also co-operate with any relevant external body.

They confirmed in a previous statement that the stand was in compliance with a recent security check, but Durham will make no further comment until all investigations are complete.

A statement from the club confirmed that Durham’s Specsavers County Championship fixture against Sussex tomorrow, September 19, will go ahead as scheduled.

The club said: "Due to the ongoing investigation following the incident in the North-East Terrace during Saturday’s IT20 fixture, the aforementioned stand will be closed for the entirety of this week’s match.

"A reminder to all spectators that the game will start at 10.30am."