Kaden Mann / Staff reporter
On December 30, 2004, 194 people were killed and 1,492 were injured in a fire in the República Cromagnon nightclub in Buenos Aires. In South Coast Herald Mail article, it was stated that “The tragedy was symbolic of government failure in Argentina, since the club had received a permit despite lacking basic fire safety measures like fire extinguishers.”
The venue had an event playing host to Callejeros, rock group. Having 3,000 people attend this concert. The fire was triggered because of a pyrotechnic flare that was set off from someone in the crowd. Many believe the fire was started on purpose as a joke before killing many people.
The structure and material of the building were made from wood, Styrofoam, acoustic panels and a plastic net. This plastic net was attached to the roof which caught on fire first, spreading flames everywhere. Teddy bear stuffing was also left out which made the fire grow stronger.
South Coast Herald Mail writes that “The owner and the band’s lead singer had told the patrons not to use flares inside the building.” People did anyway which caused damage and death towards the people at the event. According to Mayor Aníbal Ibarra from an interview in the article, “Most victims died from inhaling poisonous gases, smoke and carbon monoxide.” Emergency exit doors were chained shut and many could not escape to safety because the doors were locked so “people would not enter without paying,” Mayor Ibarra stated.
Police are investigating and searching for whoever set off the flare. Reports have said that children might be responsible and maybe charged with eight to twenty years in prison. The Argentine Courthad issued an international arrest order against Omar Chabán owner of a nightclub in Buenos Aires over the Argentine fire. Chabán was located at his house and arrested.