May 6, 2009
LAWTON – After the tent-structured building at the Dallas Cowboys practice
facility collapsed last week from strong winds, engineered fabric buildings
across the country are being inspected again as OSHA investigates the cause of
The Fort Sill Apache Casino in Lawton installed their tent in 2007 and intended
it to be a permanent facility. Casino officials said the outer shell should last
at least 8 to 10 years, and up to 15. They say it is repairable and replaceable,
and surprisingly resilient.
Mark Dube is the director of planning, development and construction of the
casino. He said "The tent is made of a fabric. It's a vinyl type of fabric
similar to that of a heavy tarp covering a semi. It's fastened to the building,
basically stretched over the building and held in place."
The dozens of massive prefabricated pieces of vinyl are secured by 4 inch by 4
inch steel tube beam trusses every 15 feet, and attaché with steel truss cords
and cables bolted in like a bridge.
Canadian Manufacturer Cover All makes the vinyl, which is the same used at the
Cowboys practice facility. However, a different company designed the building.
That company is Vision Building Systems which inspects the entire tent annually,
for rips, tears, signs of wear, and fatigue.
Dube says the casino can withstand winds of 120 miles-per-hour. Oklahoma wind
code is 80 miles-per-hour.
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