Montaque demands answers on nightclub safety
FOLLOWING the deaths of 235 persons in a recent nightclub fire in Santa Maria, Brazil, local interest in the integrity of emergency systems at local clubs has increased, and Opposition Senator Robert Montaque wants the Government to urgently answer questions on the issue.
Senator Montaque tabled questions in the Senate Friday seeking, among other things, to know whether there is a register of all the nightclubs and places of amusement, inspection of these clubs and whether an evacuation plan is included in the emergency requirements.
Montaque's questions, addressed to the Leader of Government Business in the Senate, Senator AJ Nicholson, read:
"Will the minister state whether a register of all clubs and places of amusement is currently maintained by the Government and, if so, when was it last updated?
"Will the minister state if inspections of clubs and places of amusement have yet commenced for the renewal of licences this financial year?
"If the answer to Part 2 is in the affirmative, will the minister confirm whether or not inspections are being conducted by: the local authorities (parish councils); fire departments; Ministry of Labour and Social Security; Public Health Department?
"If the answer to Part 2 is in the negative, will the minister state when inspections will commence and whether or not a timetable has been established for same?
"Will the minster state whether or not an evacuation plan is in place should a major fire occur in an unlicensed club or place of amusement?
"If the answer to Part 5 is in the affirmative, will the minister state which state entity has custody of and responsibility for the execution of the plan?"