Fire in a Crowded Theater: The Sequel!

Photo by Marc Hermann/BHB

Photo by Marc Hermann/BHB

It’s ba-aaaaack!  Kernel panic returned to the UA Cinemas at 106 Court St. tonight in an incident nearly identical to one that happened last month. Once again, a popcorn machine was reported to be the cause of the small fire that sent throngs of moviegoers out onto the streets shortly before 9:00 tonight.  The fire started on the fifth floor concession area, and set off a sprinkler head which managed to keep the flames under control.  However, as with the fire last month, a heavy smoke condition filled the building.  Fortunately, everyone inside managed to get out safely, and the Fire Department did not report that anyone required medical treatment.

Photo by Marc Hermann/BHB

Photo by Marc Hermann/BHB

With thanks to BHB tipster S. Wooledge

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  • BHMom

    Why does this website (and also that free Brooklyn Heights newspaper that seems related to the BH Blog somehow) insist on using cutesy, light-hearted titles for stories or blurbs about things that are really serious or frightening in nature? Repeated fires in a local movie theatre, muggings and assaults in the Police Blotter? What’s with that?

  • Claude Scales

    Had anyone been hurt or (God forbid) died in this incident, we would have treated it very differently.

    We have no relationship with The Brooklyn Paper beyond sometimes citing their articles, as they sometimes cite ours.

  • CobbleHiller

    I was watching District 9 when this happened. Luckily I was in the basement and only had to go up one flight of escalator but Ican’t imagine being on the top floor and having to run down to the first floor

  • The Where

    Bh mom – lay off the similac and move to park slope

  • WillowtownCop

    As long as no one got hurt, it would not bother me at all if that thing burned to the ground. Have you seen the crowds that place attracts? Further proof that blockbuster pop movies are for people too stupid to read books.

  • bornhere

    Really, BHmom, you need to take a knee, as they say. The first story about the earlier fire, “Fire in a Crowded Theater,” was not in the least “cutesy.” There were minor health issues as a result of that popcorn maker gone awry, and the article reflected the more serious nature of it. The headline and story for this event were, I think, perfect in tone — there is even “fortunately, everyone inside managed to get out safely… .” I, too, am a BH Mom, but if I were to have taught my child (as a young’un) that ANY potentially serious, happily resolved event were worthy of what-might-have-been clothes-rending and wailing, my kid would be more cuckoo than he already is. How about acknowledging how good it is that this sort of headline and story can be written, that nothing happened, and that this is little more than another nonevent in the life of that crappy theater? (And, may I add, nice pic of the firefighter in silhouette.)

  • AEB

    Head is borderline inappropriate.

    The issue involves the reflexive response to seeing the word fire in a head–for most, the word connotes/denotes danger, potential harm.

    Until this assumption is countered by the facts in the text (and even after), the reader is left with an impression of editorial frivolousness.

  • ABC

    I’m not sure BHmom was asking for clothes-rending and wailing.

    Sounds terrifying, especially for the people trying to get down from the upper levels thru that smoke. Wouldn’t be a “non-event” to me.

  • peppermint

    “Have you seen the crowds that place attracts? Further proof that blockbuster pop movies are for people too stupid to read books.” Willowtowncop, I hope you’re joking. How can you tell if someone doesn’t read books by just walking by them on the street? Furthermore, who’s to judge that just because you read/don’t read you are smart/stupid? There are many implications that your comment has that I won’t bother to address in hopes that you are just trying to stir the pot.

  • PB

    Every time I go to that theater I wonder about how I would get out of the upper floors if there was a fire. The escalators are so narrow, the landings very small. I am sure there are other FIRE exits that are marked to code, but maybe more can be done to assure that moviegoers know where the exits are. Perhaps even a video before the show to replace one of the adverts they always play where the popcorn flies off the screen. Or even just an announcement by the staff.
    I honestly think it is a tragedy waiting to happen.

  • nabeguy

    While this theater may be a magnet for certain people, articles about this theater seem to be a magnet for the most intolerant among us. It’s a nimby lightning rod.
    BHmom, blotter reporting is the lowest rung on the journalism ladder. As such, boredom towards the task may lead a reporter to try to inject a twist to it, appropriate or not….it’s nothing compared to the gallows humor that cops employ to gird themselves against the daily grind.

  • Remiel

    I saw this fire as it was just getting started. It was indeed a popcorn machine, belching flames. The odd thing was watching patrons and employees running away from the (not very big) blaze… straight past the fire extinguisher.

    I assumed the fire extinguisher cabinet must be empty, until I opened it up and sure enough, there was a full unit sitting right in there. I was actually carrying the extinguisher over to the fire myself (we wanted to see our movie!), when I saw a “manager-in-a-suit”-looking guy moving toward the fire. I shoved the fire extinguisher at him, and he took it, but then he just went over to the fire and watched as the sprinklers came on.

  • T.K. Small

    Without commenting on the patrons of the movie theater, that place is a disaster! I have been stuck in there at least three times and had to call the fire department for assistance. The worst time was for four hours and they wanted me to leave my power wheelchair on the 13th floor and take me to the hospital. Finally I convinced the fire department to carry me and my chair down the entire way after it was discovered that the theater hadn’t even called the elevator repair company. Needless to say it was a scary experience.

  • John

    DEATH TRAP !!!

  • x

    Someone should train their staff to use a fire extinguisher before something like this happens again and kills someone. P-A-S-S

  • bklyn20

    I guess they’ve been too busy bag-searching to check on the popcorn machine. That’s my new alibi — all the popcorn is burned, so we all have to bring food in! Interestingly, they don’t do searches in Manhatattan, and they don’t do fires, either.