Cirque du Soleil Cited After Performer Dies From Fall

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Nevada’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration said that Cirque du Soleil hadn’t trained the aerialist who fell to her death during a show in June properly.

The agency fined the performing arts circus from Montreal in six safety citations for $25,000 and the MGM Grand in three safety citations for $7,000.

Sarah Guillot-Guyard died after falling 94 feet to the floor when her equipment failed during a battle scene.

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“She ascended too quickly which caused the rope to come out of the sheave/pulley,” Teri Williams, spokeswoman for the Nevada Department of Business and Industry, told The Associated Press. “The rope was severed when it encountered a sheer point. The investigation concluded that she ascended too quickly, in part, because she did not receive proper training.”

Both Cirque du Soleil and MGM Grand said they would appeal.

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“Cirque du Soleil completed an exhaustive review of its safety policies and procedures in the wake of the tragic accident involving Sarah,” Cirque du Soleil said in a statement. “We have redoubled our efforts to ensure the overall diligence and safety of our performers and crew.”

The circus suspended the show after the accident, and reopened 17 days later. No other Cirque du Soleil performers have died in onstage accidents.

The 31-year-old mother of two had been performing with the show “Ka” since 2006.

 

Two performers fly through the air in 2005, in the Cirque du Soleil show “KA” at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Photo: Corbis

 

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