8 Mar 2017

BBQ Light Rig

Oceania had the worst of bad fortune when a semi loaded with a complete light rig burst into flames on the Matamata side of the Kaimai Range early February.

The rig was headed to Tauranga Domain for the One Love Festival which kicked off on Saturday 4 February at midday. At around 9.20am on Friday the driver noticed smoke in his rear view mirror and found a safe place to pull over. As soon as he did, fire took hold of the trailer.

He unhooked the tractor and drove it to a safe spot, and by the time the fire brigade arrived the load was well alight. They put three tanker loads of water into it, and then when the fire crew started to pull walls of cases down, the next row would sometimes burst into flame.


By this time the Oceania crew chief had legged the hour and a half drive down there, hoping to salvage something, but it was clear the system was a write off.

Oceania Lighting boss Simon Garrett spoke to One Love Festival lighting designer Jason Steele about alternatives, and started the frantic prep of an entire system through Friday.

Fortunately the rig for the Halburg Awards was almost prepped with fixture addressed, and as that show went up the following Tuesday, Simon reasoned that much of it could be used at One Love if it was all kept together. With approval from Jason Steele, the team feverishly rebuilt a five truss festival rig.

“I know Jason pretty well – and a lot of it was common gear”, Simon Garrett told CX NZ.

“We’d lost 52 Pointe, 20 motors from a 5 truss gig with uprights, 3 consoles, (MA2lite, Hog4, RH4 and a hog 4 wing), AVO dimmers, HPCs, Media rack, Arc washes, Sun strips and the kitchen roadcase. I miss that the most!”

“We had 2 trucks out by 5pm, legged it down there, got food on the road and finished setup by 5am with the client happy and a bunch of tired guys.”

The system came back Sunday night, and was rotated for loads in to the Halberg Awards.

“It’s a credit to my team, I’m really proud of them, hey? They just got on with it”, concluded Simon.

A collapsed wheel bearing on the rear of the trailer is thought to be the cause of the fire.


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