Codes & Standards, Fire Prevention & Protection, Fire Service Traditions and History, Firefighting

The Station Nightclub Fire: Revisiting the Lessons

Issue 1 and Volume 165.

By JIM TIDWELL On February 20, 2003, in West Warwick, Rhode Island, the fourth deadliest nightclub fire in United States history occurred in The Station nightclub. More than two-thirds of the 462 people in attendance were either killed or injured (100 dead, 230 injured). A live band that was using fireworks as part of its act ignited foam insulation that had been installed around and over the stage. The fire department was notified about 40 seconds after the fire was ignited and arrived on scene in less than five minutes. In that short time frame, fire had engulfed the club, and fire was showing through the roof. The damage was done. Videos: The Station Nightclub Fire The Rescue Squad and the Rock Band: Responding to Large Venue Show Incidents Before the fire had cooled, the investigations began. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the National Fire Protection…

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