Radiohead Drum Tech Killed in Toronto
Tragedy strikes before final gig of North American tour
The Hot Press Newsdesk, 18 Jun 2012
A Radiohead employee was killed during the preparations for the band's scheduled gig in Toronto, Canada on Saturday.
Tragedy struck when overhanging metal collapsed during the pre-concert set-up, falling onto to stage, where drum tech Scott Johnson was working. He was crushed underneath the metal and was pronounced dead at the scene. Three other workers were injured in the incident, but their injuries are not life-threatening. The accident happened about an hour before the doors were due to open for the gig at Downville Park, which was promoted by Live Nation. The show was cancelled as a mark of respect. Johnson was described as "the best drum tech in the industry" by The Australian Pink Flody, with whom he had also worked.
The authorities, including representatives from the provincial Ministry of Labour, will investigate how the tragic accident occurred. Seven died and more than 40 were injured in an incident at the Indiana State Festival last year. In that instance, weather conditions were clearly responsible with high winds contributing to the collapse of the stage surround. The Downville Park date was the final gig in Radiohead's North American tour.
"Due to unforeseen circumstances tonight's at downsview park tonight has been cancelled," the band's Twitter feed stated and added: "Fans are advised not to make their way to the venue."
Radiohead drummer Phil Selway posted this message to fans last night on Facebook.
"We have all been shattered by the loss of Scott Johnson, our friend and colleague. He was a lovely man, always positive, supportive and funny; a highly skilled and valued member of our great road crew. We will miss him very much. Our thoughts and love are with Scott's family and all those close to him."
As of yet no statement has been added to the band's official website.