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At Least 7 Hurt in Studio Collapse

January 9, 1998

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ A bleacher railing gave way Thursday as audience members at a taping of the television show ``Vibe″ scrambled to grab free CDs, injuring at least seven people who tumbled to the concrete floor.

Another person, an 80-year-old man, was hurt during the evacuation, the Fire Department said.

The rail collapsed during the warm-up for the show when audience members rushed the front of the bleachers to grab compact discs being tossed into the stands as prizes.

``People were moving to catch stuff,″ said Charles Cappleman, senior vice president of operations at CBS Television City.

``One group leaned against the left hand rail of the bleachers and the railing gave way and folks went over.″

The show was between tapings of two episodes, and the second taping was suspended. The call came in to the Fire Department at 5:18 p.m.

There were conflicting reports of the number of people hurt and the nature of their injuries.

CBS Television City and the ``Vibe″ show said seven people were hurt falling from the bleachers, while Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey said eight people _ six women and two men _ received minor injuries in the fall, and one man was hurt in the evacuation.

Humphrey said the most serious case was a woman whose injuries appeared minor but was treated with extra caution because she is pregnant.

All of the victims were being sent to hospitals. Their identities weren’t released.

``Vibe″ went on the air Aug. 4, but after three months of shoddy ratings, brought Sinbad on as host to replace Chris Spencer. The show targets a young and urban audience with a guest list of hip rappers and actors.

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