LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — Cellphone video from partygoers shows complete chaos in the aftermath of a deck collapse at a pool party.
First responders responded to the home outside Sutton around midnight Monday where callers reported the second-story deck had collapsed.
Emergency Management Director Tim Lewis tells Channel 8 at least 17 people were taken to area hospitals by paramedics. He says there could have been many more who went in private vehicles.
“We’ll never know,” he said.
Officials estimate 200 people attended the party, and say a DJ was playing music when a crowd of people went up onto the deck with him causing it to collapse.
Lewis described the scene at chaos, with injured people littered across the property. He said there were so many vehicles parked along nearby roads that first responders could barely get to the home.
He said officials initiated a “Mass Casualty Plan,” and called area hospitals to see how many patients they would be able to take. Injuries ranged from cuts and brises to concussions and broken bones.
“A lot of neck braces were needed,” he said.
Lewis said some partygoers admitted to using controlled substances, and many of them weren’t coherent enough to describe what had happened. He said many of them scattered as law enforcement officers arrived.
“People ran out into cornfields,” he said.
Lewis said the majority of license plates he saw on vehicles near the home weren’t local, and that many were from Lincoln, Omaha or out of state.
“I’ve been in public safety for a long time and this is the largest mass casualty event I’ve ever experienced,” he said.
Public records from the Fillmore County Assessor value the home and property at more than $550,000.