Club Fire Tragedy
Local school students come up with their own changes to the state fire code
WEST WARWICK, R.I. (AP) _ Middle school students responded to the deadly nightclub fire at The Station by drafting a fire safety report of their own, which they presented to the town council on
About a dozen students from Tamara Paulo's citizenship class at Deering Middle School asked the council for strict compliance with the latest fire code and a ban on all pyrotechnics.
One by one, the students approached the panel to ask for fireproof decorations, more inspectors and lower building capacities in places of public gathering.
The report came in response to the Feb. 20 fire at The Station, which killed 100 people and injured nearly 200.
``The public expects that when they go into a building, they will be safe,'' said civics student Patrick Jordan.
The fire affected many schoolchildren, including two students in Paulo's class. One of her students, Carlos Pimental Jr., lost his father. He testified last month before the state commission
investigating the fire, but was not at the meeting on Tuesday.
The students handed out red, white and black ribbons, which they are selling for 50 cents to raise money for businesses to comply with the code and install sprinkler systems.
``The disadvantage is if people are not up to code, then they have to pay a lot of money to get up to code,'' said seventh-grader Jennifer Russo.
Shortly after the fire, Paulo's students decided they would look at the state fire code and tell state and local officials how to make it better.
``They did a tremendous amount of work, and I'm sure it has helped the students through the process of healing,'' said acting Council President Jeanne Marie DiMasi.