Scoreboard Speaker Fire Evacuates Crew Stadium


Speakers on top of the scoreboard at Columbus Crew Stadium overheated and caught fire on Saturday.

Fans were forced to evacuate just before the game was about to start around 7:15 p.m.

"We just happened to look up. And there's a little bit of white smoke. And then we turn around, and they're yelling at everyone to move," Tiffani Templin said.

"And then it just started billowing black smoke, and flames started shooting out and metal buckling and stuff falling," said Templin.

Firefighters responded within minutes to put out the fire. A ladder was raised the top of the scoreboard to spray water directly on the burning area.

Doppler 10 meteorologist Josh Poland was serving as an announcer for the game when the fire started. He said since the sound system was burning, it presented problem to try to inform the crowd about the need to evacuate.

"At that time, they wanted us to announce to the people in the stadium that they needed to exit that area, but it was the speakers that had been on fire. And the speaker system was down, so we couldn't make that announcement," Poland said.

Columbus Crew representatives issued a statement that indicated an issue with the wiring in the speakers likely caused the fire. There were no injuries.

The Crew went on to beat D.C. United, 3-0.

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