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The Station Fire / Great White - Rhode Island, 2003

25 Mar 2020

Raw footage of the early moments of the fire at The Station. A Rhode Island nightclub which burned down on February 20, 2003, killing 100 people in attendance to see the 80s hair-metal band, Great White. The fire started as a result of the band's pyrotechnics. The building was not sprinklered.

I am told there were 462 people in the building. Of those, 100 died, another 130 were seriously injured. That makes casualties of half the building's occupants. Bad odds.

Ironically, the footage shot was filmed by a cameraman who was there to film a story on nightclub safety. The local news anchor who was to narrate the story was part-owner of the club.

This video is deeply disturbing on many levels. I am a professional firefighter, and have used this video for years to help teach new firefighters at the fire academy about the incredible speed with with fire grows and spreads, and the importance of strict fire coding. Fire department response in this video is very fast.

I do not post this video to be ghoulish in any way, it's my hope that this will be viewed as cautionary tale and helps prevent tragedies like this in the future. If you are a member of the lay-public, please watch the clock as you watch this and bear in mind how fast these events unfold. Always be aware of your exits in public places.

Share with your friends, family, and with the politicians in your town so they can appreciate the dangers that are still associated with fire even in this era.

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