WinStar Casino isn’t taking chances with tent

BY CARRIE COPPERNOLL Modified: May 6, 2009 at 8:32 am •  Published: May 6, 2009
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THACKERVILLE — Construction officials will inspect an Oklahoma casino that has a tent structure built by the same company that built the Dallas Cowboys practice facility that collapsed Saturday.

WinStar Casino officials scheduled the inspection out of precaution even before the Cowboys’ facility collapsed, casino spokeswoman Kym Koch said.

The tent structure at the casino is different from the one at the Cowboys’ practice field, Koch said. The WinStar tent isn’t as tall as the Cowboys’ tent. However, both tents were built by Summit Structures LLC, a fabric building company based in Allentown, Pa.

The Cowboys’ facility collapsed during a storm Saturday in Irving, Texas.

Twelve people were injured, including one man who was paralyzed from the waist down. Federal inspectors visited the collapse site Monday, said a spokeswoman for the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Construction officials with the Chickasaw Nation, which owns WinStar, began planning for an inspection two weeks ago, Koch said. A team of construction experts will be hired to do the safety audit at the WinStar tent.

"In light of what’s gone on in Dallas, obviously, they’ll push that up on the burner,” she said.

Koch said she doesn’t know when the inspection will occur. In addition to regular maintenance, the tent was last inspected when it was resurfaced in 2007. The casino building was built in 2003.

Contributing:

The Associated Press