Karaoke owner faces charge after karaoke blaze kills 13

Colonel Duong Van Giap, chief of the police division in charge of social crimes (PC45) yesterday said that police in Hanoi decided to prosecute the owner of the karaoke lounge in Tran Thai Tong Street where  at least 13 people were killed in a blaze on November 1.

The blaze breaks out fiercely killing 13 people (Photo: SGGP)

PC45 and police in Hanoi are carrying out an investigation in the spot.  The karaoke lounge has combustible materials hence it took hours to put out. Additionally, it locates in a crowded residential area on the outskirts of Hanoi and flames quickly spread to engulf three neighboring houses.

In a report on the blaze, the Hanoi People’s  Committee said that the karaoke lounge was built on the area of 90 square meter with nine floors owned by Nguyen Dieu Linh, born in 1986. The owner has certificate of business yet it lacks certificate of firefighting, certificate of karaoke business.

According to the People’s Committee, on October 9, an inspection team of local authority paid a visit to the lounge which did not operate at that time. Inspectors asked the owner not to operate karaoke when she has not had enough certificates of fire safety.

In the next visit on October 17 , the inspectors continued asking the owner not to open the lounge until it provided certificates of building safety. The owner pledged not to operate unless she proved building safety or else she will be held accountable.

After the blaze, the Vietnamese Prime Minister and the Ministry of Public Security sent it urgent dispatch asking local governments to close down karaoke parlors and restaurants that fail to observe fire preventive measures. Police in charge of firefighting ordered an urgent inspection on fire preventive measures in public places in major cities nationwide, focusing on karaoke parlors, discotheques, bars and restaurants.

In the sideline of the National Assembly on November 2, Party Secretary in Hanoi Hoang Trung Hai sent his condolence to families of victims of the blaze who were taken home for burial ceremony.

Mr. Hai affirmed leaders of the district where the karaoke lounge locates will be held for responsibility and he is waiting for the investigation result carried out by police.

Karaoke remains popular in Vietnam and is often picked as entertainment for large groups of people. However, fire drills at such places are rarely conducted and exits not always provided.

By staff writers – translated by Uyen Phuong

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