Probe targets pyrotechnics at Main Street nightclub
Ryan Summerlin January 29, 2013
City Hall officials are investigating whether some sort of pyrotechnics were used without the proper permits inside a Main Street nightclub during the Sundance Film Festival.
The Park City Police Department said officers and Building Department officials responded to Park City Live, 427 Main St., at just before 11 p.m. on Jan. 19, during the busy opening weekend of the festival. Park City Live was not an official Sundance venue, but it drew large crowds during the festival.
The police said in an online statement, "fireworks had been set off inside of the establishment by employees." It did not specify what business the employees worked for. The statement indicated the rest of the fireworks were confiscated. Officers assisted in a sweep of Park City Live for additional fireworks, the police said.
Kurt Simister, a Building Department official who serves as the deputy fire marshal for City Hall, said in an interview early in the week the case remains under investigation. Simister described the pyrotechnics as a "sparkler-type device."
Park City Live, inside the Memorial Building, occupies the space where Harry O’s once operated. It is the largest nightclub on Main Street. Park City Live was hopping during the film festival, and long lines were seen outside at some points during Sundance. The nightclub’s website indicated a performance by Avicii was scheduled on Jan. 19 starting at 9 p.m.
"It endangers lives. It simply can ignite other combustibles in the building," Simister said about the pyrotechnics.
Simister declined to discuss the details of the investigation. He said the results could be forwarded to City Hall attorneys by the end of the week to be screened for charges.
Simister said City Hall did not issue an approval for pyrotechnics to be used at Park City Live. He said there were approximately 800 people inside the nightclub at the time the pyrotechnics were used.
Paul Hewitt, the Park City Fire District chief, said using pyrotechnics indoors presents a "serious life safety issue." Hewitt mentioned the recent tragic fire in a nightclub in Brazil that killed more than 200 people as he spoke of the dangers.
"Combustibles here and combustibles in Brazil are no different," Hewitt said.
A firm that represents Park City Live did not immediately respond to a request for comment.