Report about Colectiv club fire: Serious construction faults and lack of public controls, say Romanian investigators

Newsroom 10/02/2016 | 11:37

More than three months after the fire in Bucharest-based night club Colectiv, which lead to the death of 63 people, a complex investigation carried out by experts of the Prosecutors Office revealed grave construction faults and lack of overview from the public authorities that should have made sure the club fulfilled all the legal requirements before opening its doors.

The report stated the owners of the Colectiv club should have asked for a new urban planning certificate when they opened their business on the premises of the former factory.

Before, the Colectiv club was opened, the location had been used by two other night clubs, which had rented the place.

“The expertize notes that change of the destination (usage e.n) of the location was made by the three tenants, with at least the first two of them making construction works to carry out the activity they had reported, but the fulfillment of the legal requirements has not been found. (…) Moreover, the expertise has not found any measure undertaken by the public institutions, which should have observed the situation on the ground and ask the three clubs to meet the legal requirements”, according to the report, quoted by

Although investigators are not sure if the owners of the Colectiv club did any construction works, for instance repairs or cleaning operations, they should have secured an urban planning certificate and a construction permit.

The building materials that were used to upgrade the club did not meet the legal requirements, stated the report. Experts said the sound insulation panels were highly flammable, the ventilation equipments were not placed properly and there was no safety lightning. In addition, the club did not have any alarm or fire extinguishing systems in place.

Moreover, the Colectiv club had only one exit door, which could be used but it did not meet the legal requirements. The club had a second exit door, but on October 30, when the fire broke out, this exit was blocked.

The report concluded that in the last five years, since the location had been used by three clubs, there wasn’t any inspection by public institutions.

The three owners of Colectiv club are prosecuted for manslaughter and negligent injury.

In addition, two officers from the Emergency Situations Department (ISU) were put on trial, for failing to report the irregularities they found during informal controls at the club.

Ovidiu Posirca

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