Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Cocoanut Grove Fire #2

The fire started about 10:15 p.m. in the downstairs Melody Lounge. Despite waiters efforts to douse the flames, it spread quickly, igniting decorations on the walls and ceilings. Most patrons attempted to exit through the main entrance, a single revolving door, quickly rendering it useless. (Firefighters later had to dismantle it to enter.)


Eric said...

The cause of the fire was never determined. It was an era when many more people smoked than is the case to day and, given the flammable décor in close proximity to all the lit cigarettes, burning matches, etc., it is a wonder that the club hadn’t burn down years earlier.

Ole Whitey said...

I told the revolving door story before, but you know how I repeat myself.

A friend and I were talking once and I mentioned Buck Jones. He asked who Buck was, said he's always wondered.

I told him a little bit including the Coconut Grove fire story. He replied that there were laws that were called "Buck Jones Laws" to the effect that if you have a revolving door entrance to a building, it must be flanked by regular doors in case the revolving door jams, as it would if people were pushing it both ways.

I had never thought of it before but it seems to be the case with every building I see having this type entrance.

My friend had heard of the laws but didn't know the circumstances of how they came about.