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Fires

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Disasters

The Station nightclub fire

The Station nightclub fire occurred on Thursday, February 20, 2003, in West Warwick, Rhode Island, killing 100 people and injuring 230. The fire was caused by pyrotechnics set off by the tour manager of the evening's headlining band Great White, which ignited plastic foam used as sound insulation in the walls and ceilings surrounding the stage. The blaze reached flashover within one minute, causing all combustible materials to burn. Intense black smoke engulfed the club in 5½ minutes. Video footage of the fire shows its ignition, rapid growth, the billowing smoke that quickly made escape impossible, and blocked egress that further hindered evacuation. The toxic smoke, heat, and the resulting human crush toward the main exit killed 100; 230 were injured and another 132 escaped uninjured. Many of the survivors developed posttraumatic stress disorder as a result of psychological trauma.

Disasters

Yarnell Hill Fire

The Yarnell Hill Fire was a wildfire near Yarnell, Arizona, ignited by lightning on June 28, 2013. On June 30, it overran and killed 19 City of Prescott firefighters, members of the Granite Mountain Hotshots. It was the deadliest U.S. wildfire since the 1991 East Bay Hills fire, which killed 25 people, and the deadliest wildland fire for U.S. firefighters since the 1933 Griffith Park Fire, which killed 29 impromptu civilian firefighters. It was also the most fatal incident of any kind involving U.S. firefighters since the September 11 attacks, which killed 343. It is the sixth-deadliest American firefighter disaster overall and the deadliest wildfire ever in Arizona.

Disasters

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire

The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in New York City on March 25, 1911, was the deadliest industrial disaster in the history of the city, and one of the deadliest in U.S. history. The fire caused the deaths of 146 garment workers – 123 women and 23 men – who died from the fire, smoke inhalation, or falling or jumping to their deaths. Most of the victims were recent Italian and Jewish immigrant women aged 14 to 23; of the victims whose ages are known, the oldest victim was 43-year-old Providenza Panno, and the youngest were 14-year-olds Kate Leone and Rosaria "Sara" Maltese.

Disasters

2019 Brazil wildfires

The 2019 Amazon rainforest wildfires season saw a year-to-year surge in fires occurring in the Amazon rainforest and Amazon biome within Brazil, Bolivia, Paraguay, and Peru during that year's Amazonian tropical dry season. Fires normally occur around the dry season as slash-and-burn methods are used to clear the forest to make way for agriculture, livestock, logging, and mining, leading to deforestation of the Amazon rainforest. Such activity is generally illegal within these nations, but enforcement of environmental protection can be lax. The increased rates of fire counts in 2019 led to international concern about the fate of the Amazon rainforest, which is the world's largest carbon dioxide sink and plays a significant role in mitigating Global Warming.

Disasters

Cocoanut Grove fire

The Cocoanut Grove Fire was a nightclub fire in the United States. The Cocoanut Grove was a premier nightclub during the post-Prohibition 1930s and 1940s in Boston, Massachusetts. On November 28, 1942, it was the scene of the deadliest nightclub fire in history, killing 492 people and injuring hundreds more. The scale of the tragedy shocked the nation and briefly replaced the events of World War II in newspaper headlines. It led to a reform of safety standards and codes across the US, and to major changes in the treatment and rehabilitation of burn victims internationally.

Disasters

Camp Fire

The Camp Fire was the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history. It is also the deadliest wildfire in the United States since the Cloquet fire in 1918 and is high on the list of the world's deadliest wildfires; it is the sixth-deadliest U.S. wildfire overall. It was one of the world's costliest natural disasters in 2018. Named after Camp Creek Road, its place of origin, the fire started on November 8, 2018, in Butte County, in Northern California. After exhibiting extreme fire spread, fireline intensity, and spotting behaviors through the wilderness community of Concow, an urban firestorm formed in the densely populated foothill town of Paradise. The fire caused at least 85 civilian fatalities, with two people still missing, and injured 12 civilians, two prison inmate firefighters, and three other firefighters. It covered an area of 153,336 acres (62,053 ha), and destroyed 18,804 structures, with most of the damage occurring within the first four hours. Total damage was $16.5 billion; one-quarter of the damage, $4 billion, was not insured. With the arrival of the first winter rainstorm of the season, the fire reached 100 percent containment after seventeen days on November 25, 2018.

Disasters

Woolsey Fire

The Woolsey Fire was a destructive wildfire that burned in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties of the U.S. state of California. The fire ignited on November 8, 2018 and burned 96,949 acres of land. The fire destroyed 1,643 structures, killed three people, and prompted the evacuation of more than 295,000 people. It was one of several fires in California that ignited on the same day. While the nearby Hill Fire was contained with minimal damage on November 16, the Camp Fire in northern California destroyed most of the town of Paradise.

Disasters

2019 California wildfires

The 2019 wildfire season is the current-running fire season in California. So far, over 6,190 fires have been recorded according to Cal Fire and the US Forest Service, totaling an estimated of 198,392 acres (80,286 ha) acres of burned land as of October 27. Although the 2019 fire season had been relatively quiet in California through mid-September as compared to past years, October through December is still expected to have the greatest fire potential as the Diablo winds and the Santa Ana winds pick up.

Disasters

Windscale fire

The Windscale fire of 10 October 1957 was the worst nuclear accident in Great Britain's history, ranked in severity at level 5 out of a possible 7 on the International Nuclear Event Scale. The fire took place in Unit 1 of the two-pile Windscale facility on the northwest coast of England in Cumberland. The two graphite-moderated reactors, referred to at the time as "piles", had been built as part of the British post-war atomic bomb project. Windscale Pile No. 1 was operational in October 1950 followed by Pile No. 2 in June 1951.

Disasters

Iroquois Theatre fire

The Iroquois Theatre fire happened on December 30, 1903, in Chicago, Illinois. It was the deadliest theater fire and the deadliest single-building fire in United States history. At least 602 people died as a result of the fire, but not all the deaths were reported, as some of the bodies were removed from the scene.

Disasters

2018 California wildfires

The 2018 wildfire season was the deadliest and most destructive wildfire season on record in California, with a total of 8,527 fires burning an area of 1,893,913 acres (766,439 ha), the largest amount of burned acreage recorded in a fire season, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC), as of December 21. The fires have caused more than $3.5 billion in damages, including $1.792 billion in fire suppression costs. Through the end of August 2018, Cal Fire alone spent $432 million on operations. The Mendocino Complex Fire burned more than 459,000 acres (186,000 ha), becoming the largest complex fire in the state's history, with the complex's Ranch Fire surpassing the Thomas Fire and the Santiago Canyon Fire of 1889 to become California's single-largest recorded wildfire.

Disasters

King's Cross fire

On 18 November 1987, at approximately 19:30, a fire broke out at King's Cross St. Pancras tube station, a major interchange on the London Underground. As well as the mainline railway stations above ground and subsurface platforms for the Metropolitan lines, there were platforms deeper underground for the Northern, Piccadilly, and Victoria lines. The fire started under a wooden escalator serving the Piccadilly line and, at 19:45, erupted in a flashover into the underground ticket hall, killing 31 people and injuring 100.

Disasters

1967 USS Forrestal fire

On 29 July 1967, a fire broke out on board the aircraft carrier USS Forrestal. An electrical anomaly caused a Zuni rocket on a McDonnell Douglas F-4B Phantom to fire, striking an external fuel tank of a A-4 Skyhawk. The flammable jet fuel spilled across the flight deck, ignited, and triggered a chain-reaction of explosions that killed 134 sailors and injured 161. At the time, Forrestal was engaged in combat operations in the Gulf of Tonkin, during the Vietnam War. The ship survived, but with damage exceeding US$72 million, not including the damage to aircraft. Future United States Senator John McCain and future four-star admiral and U.S. Pacific Fleet Commander Ronald J. Zlatoper were among the survivors. Lt. Tom Treanore returned to the ship as its commander and retired an admiral.

Disasters

2016 Oakland warehouse fire

On December 2, 2016, at approximately 11:20 p.m. PST, a fire broke out in a former warehouse that had been converted into an artist collective with living spaces known as Ghost Ship. At the time, the warehouse in the Fruitvale neighborhood of Oakland, California, was hosting a concert featuring artists from the house music record label 100% Silk. The warehouse was only permitted for industrial purposes. Residential and entertainment uses were illegal.

Disasters

Happy Land fire

The Happy Land fire was an act of arson that killed 87 people trapped in the unlicensed Happy Land social club at 1959 Southern Boulevard in the West Farms section of the Bronx in New York City on March 25, 1990. Most of the victims were young Hondurans celebrating Carnival, many of them part of the Garifuna American community. Unemployed Cuban refugee Julio González, whose former girlfriend was employed at the club, was arrested soon afterward and ultimately convicted of arson and murder.