Trio on trial in collapse of ice rink that left 15 dead in Germany

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Two engineers and an architect go on trial in connection with the collapse of an indoor ice rink that left 15 dead in southern Germany.

28th January 2008

Traunstein (dpa) - The trio, aged between 54 and 67, are charged with negligence resulting in death and injuries, when the building's wooden roof collapsed under the weight of snow on January 2, 2006.

They are accused of making errors in the design and inspection of the 32-year-old sports complex in the winter resort of Bad Reichenhall.

Investigations into the cause of the accident uncovered shortcomings in the planning and construction of the ice rink.

Experts said the flat roof, held up by massive wooden beams which were formed out of many layers of wood glued together, failed under the weight of tons of new snow.

Twelve children and three women, all locals, were killed by the falling roof.

Defence lawyers accused local authorities of being responsible for the disaster by failing to carry out proper maintenance of the building.

A fourth man charged in the case did not appear in court because of illness and was ordered to be tried separately at a later date.


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