Mustang News Staff Report
UPDATE March 8:
Nine people, not eight, were injured in the roof collapse on March 7 at a St. Fratty’s Day party on Hathway Avenue, according to Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center spokesperson Ron Yukelson.
UPDATE 11:23 a.m.:
According to SLO City Fire Department Battalion Chief Bob Bisson, all but two students were able to remove themselves from the scene on their own and walk toward Campus Bottle where a temporary medical station was set up.
Two students remained trapped. One of the two had a severe injury.
“She had a large wood splinter from the roofing material that impaled her left leg and she was still laying in the debris pile, so we got her out and assisted another person that was laying nearby,” Bisson said.
The injury was not life threatening, Bisson said.
San Luis Obispo Police Department Captain Chris Staley said that no citations or arrests were made prior to the incident.
“We only had five officers out at that point,” Staley said. “They were instructed get in the neighborhood and see what was going on.”
Cal Poly spokesperson Matt Lazier provided a statement from the university in response to the incident via email.
“We are working closely with fire and hospital officials to stay apprised of the conditions of those who were hurt,” the statement said. “Our thoughts are with those injured, and we wish them a speedy recovery. Cal Poly is also in close contact with local public safety agencies as they work to determine exactly what occurred. Their findings will help inform our own efforts to ascertain what led to this incident and decide how we will respond.”
Lazier said the university is working with authorities to learn if any university-affiliated organizations were involved.
Four people were taken to local emergency rooms after a roof collapsed at a St. Fratty’s Day event this morning. Eight people were medically evaluated, but all of the injuries were minor, SLO City Fire Chief Garret Olson said.
“It’s a tragic and unfortunate event, and we’re really happy but also very lucky that somebody wasn’t killed,” Olson said.
SLO Fire was dispatched at 6:24 a.m. to the 300 block of Hathway, where approximately 1,000 students were celebrating St. Fratty’s Day. Once there, they declared the situation a “mass casualty incident” and dedicated resources to medical, transportation and rescue services.
Collapse occurred at scene of party on Hathaway attended by over 1000 students. 7 students were injured. pic.twitter.com/H0EnEHEEaK
— SLO City Fire (@SLO_City_Fire) March 7, 2015
Local law enforcement had been aware students might celebrate the event early to avoid fines, Olson said. Cal Poly Dean of Students Jean DeCosta issued an email to students this past week, alluding to “severe sanctions and double fines starting at $700.”
The San Luis Obispo Police Department increased its staff in preparation but didn’t know the event would start this morning, SLOPD Capt. Chris Staley said.
SLO Fire was well-staffed, Olson said, but it wasn’t expecting the size of this event.
“Obviously, something of this magnitude just strips the resources of the community,” he said.
The collapsed building is a “complete loss,” Olson said.
Video by Leah Horner/Mustang News
This post will be updated as more information becomes available.
Leah Horner, Kayla Missman, Kyle McCarty and Sam Pryor contributed to this report.