LAS VEGAS, Nev. (702 Times, NV Globe) – Fire and choking smoke swept through the MGM Grand Hotel 42 years ago, killing 87 people and injuring almost 600. This catastrophe resulted in far-reaching safety reforms that extended beyond the Las Vegas Strip.
The incident occurred in the original location of the MGM Grand Hotel, which is currently Bally’s Las Vegas but may be renamed Horseshoe shortly.
The electrical fire erupted in a restaurant, igniting a blaze that ripped across the casino floor, sending smoke and toxins via the ventilation system into hotel rooms where people were sleeping. Many of the deaths were caused by smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning.
“It was a major, major fire,” said former Clark County Fire Department Chief Fire Investigator Mike Patterson. “It’s indwelled upon my brain forever.”
In addition to the lack of sprinklers in the casino, Patterson claims that other circumstances also had a part in the fatal incident that morning. “It was just a partly sprinkled building, which meant that the parts under 24-hour surveillance did not have sprinklers while the rest of the spaces did,” Patterson explained.
Patterson said that his research found that the destruction was caused by a pie case at The Deli restaurant. “It was getting hot all the time from the compressor, and it eventually broke down and shorted out, and it went and put the building on fire,” Patterson recalled.
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