Rhode Island Bars Ask More Time to Meet Fire Code

The Incident
First-In: Heroic Rescues
Death Toll Rises to 97
At Least 96 Dead in Inferno
Rescuers Struggle with Horror
Fire, Smoke Turns Club Into Hell
Discuss the Warwick Tragedy

The Aftermath
Changes to Safety Laws Since R.I. Fire
Few Changes After Club Blaze Killed 100
Web Site Comforts RI Patients
RI Gov. Orders Strict Inspections
2 Families Sue in RI Club Blaze
RI Nightclub Claims May Total $1B
RI Nightclub Death Toll Rises to 98
Victims Face Long Recovery
All But 4 Victims ID'd
Thousands Mourn Victims
IDs Could Take Days
Family, Friends Search
9/11 Widow Reflects
Survivors Recall Heroic Acts

The Investigation
Patron Capacity Unclear in RI Fire
Band Member Testifies
RI Reports Don't Mention Foam
Fire Inspector Report Released
Post-9/11 Drills Aid Club Rescue
Federal Team Launches Probe
Grand Jury Begins Probe
Brannigan: Inspectors Ready?
Investigation Ramps Up
Investigators Check Soundproof
Pyrotechnics Examined in Clubs
Disasters Prompt Inspections
Sprinklers Not Required
Nightclub Up to Code Before Fire
Town Withholds Records
RI Begins Inspections
No Warning of Pyro Use
Pyrotechnics Usually Safe
Atty: RI Club Rep. OK'd Pyrotech.
Fire Challenges State Atty. Gen.
IDs Weighed Heavy on Dentists
FEMA Denies Disaster Aid for Fire

Photos & Video
IBS Scene SlideShow
ABC: The Fire Starts
WJAR Video Feedroom

History of Tragedies
Carter: History Strikes Again
Fire, Life Safety Laws in Front
Tragedy Recalls Cocoanut Grove
Worst Club Tragedies
Nightclub Disasters Too Familiar
List: Worst Club Tragedies

Related Sites
West Warwick Fire Department
Warwick Fire Department
FH Network: Rhode Island
Providence Journal Coverage

``We have deadlines this July and we still haven't been inspected,'' said Dale Venturini, president of the Rhode Island Hospitality and Tourism Association.

Venturini's remarks came while testifying before a state legislative commission studying the fire safety code. She said many businesses doubt they will meet phased-in deadlines for installing sprinklers.

The deadlines are part of safety measures approved after the February 2003 fire, which killed 100 people in a West Warwick nightclub.

George Farrell, chairman of the Rhode Island Fire Safety Code Board of Appeal and Review, agreed the deadlines may need to be pushed back.

But, Democratic Rep. Norman Landroche Jr., who sits on the five-member commission, said he is concerned about how victims' relatives will react if lawmakers make concessions to businesses.

Landroche, a firefighter who was among the first to respond to the nightclub fire, noted that lawmakers still need to consider whether the deadlines are fair.

Representatives with the Rhode Island Association of Fire Chiefs said earlier this month that inspections have been slowed in some communities because of difficulty interpreting the new code.

Pyrotechnics used by the rock band Great White ignited foam placed near the nightclub's stage as soundproofing. The club's two owners and the band's former tour manager have been indicted on manslaughter charges.