The New Hampshire Department of Safety
Office of the New Hampshire Fire Marshal
State Fire Marshal William Degnan asked the public for continued assistance in reconstructing the events leading to the circus tent collapse in Lancaster Monday evening emphasizing that every witnesses’ statement is an important piece to the investigation.
“We have been contacted by dozens of attendees,” Degnan said. “Each person’s account provided important pieces of information that further developed the state’s understanding of this tragic event.”
The identities of the father and daughter who perished in the collapse were also released, Robert Young, 41, and Annabelle Young, 8, both of Concord, Vermont. The autopsy report determined the causes of death as blunt force trauma, Degnan said. Degnan urged the media to respect the family’s privacy. Many attendees remain hospitalized at this time, he said.
The National Weather Service is characterizing the weather pattern that coincided with the collapse of the tent’s steel infrastructure as a microburst with estimated wind gusts of 75 mph, possibly reaching even 90 mph, Degnan said.
The Fire Marshal asks anyone who was in attendance during the collapse to contact the Office of the Fire Marshal at FMO@dos.nh.gov or to call (603)223-4289. An investigator is also available at the fairgrounds for circus attendees who wish to share their experiences.