Santika Nightclub Media Report
There are many events happening every day all over the world. All of the events have a positive and potentially even a negative impact on its communities. In Thailand in early 2009 a New Years’ event had a very negative impact on its community. While people were having fun partying and celebrating the New Year’s party event in ‘Santika’, the nightclub in the busiest area in Bangkok Ekkamai a fire broke out that changed the scene forever.
It was a big shocked for everyone when the television and radio announced the news about the big fire inferno at Santika nightclub about 30 minutes after the countdown of the New Year.The record showed that 66 people were killed and over 200 people were injured from smoke inhalation, burns and while a stampede for the exit occurred. Included in the death toll were tourists from Britain, Australia, Singaporean, France and Japanese (“Santika Club fire,” n. d. ). There were many media reports that talked about this event, obviously in terms of news and the negative side of the celebrations.
This report will looks at different sources of media reports, which reported on the Zantika nightclub fire and discusses the failure of management responsible for the event and how this relates to event management theories.Different media articles appeared to have reported different causes of the fire that occurred in the Santika nightclub at the New Year’s party of the year 2009. Some of the articles stated the cause of fire was from someone playing with fireworks inside of the club (Schuettler, 2009). Other media articles said that the blaze started form an electrical fault used at the stage for special effects (“Santika Club fire,” n. d.
). The band singer ‘Saravuth Ariya’ who was on the stage at the moment when the fire started was accused of lighting the fireworks that might have sparked the fire in the nightclub.However, the singer claimed, “I did not use any lighter or fireworks during my show. I saw some blaze dropping from the top of the stage little by little after the stage special effects had been on for more than 20 minutes then people started to scream and running away”. His words had been accepted by the police after the police found some video recorded scenes from the security camera in Zantika nightclub.
The recorded show that he did not cause any fire but the blaze suddenly fell from the roof during his show.Saravuth got acquitted and released after the police investigation (Sutatenajinda, 2009). Accidents can happen during any event but the most important thing for all the event providers and managers is to consider about how to deal with potential problems and work towards minimising the risks of any accidents; preparation and prevention and possible the solutions to any crisis must be part of any event management plan. Unfortunately in Zantika’s case, all of the media articles blamed the Zantika organization by having failed to prepare for a potential crisis.Andrew (2007) point out that “the safety of people in the event of a fire in building is dependent on having emergency procedures that make full use of the fire safety design features of the building and take account of the behavior of the occupants when faced with an emergency situation”(p.
240). But according to all the media articles and having had interviewed party goes it was stated that these people claimed that there were no proper fire exits, no sprinkler system, no fire alarm and no emergency light to warning and help the people in the nightclub.Some victims said when they saw the blaze, they still think that it might be part of the show and not an accident until they saw the speaker and people at the backstage freaking out and running away (NTDTV, 2009). Additional comment from another media said that; if management and employees have had a better management plan prepared which should have included a risk management contingency plan, then the outcome of such a tragedy could have been better without the loss of lives and injuries.It appeared that both management and employees were unprepared for dealing competently with such a dangerous situation, the action they should have taken when the fire broke out, how to warn the crowd without panicking them, understand the crowd movement, how to help people escaping from inside of the building and where could they find the fire-fighting equipment and use it (Sutatenajinda, 2009).After this tragedy, the police and department of justice found the club had registered the venue as a private residence not as an entertainment venue; in another words, this meant the venue had received the incorrect permit to open and operate the nightclub (CAMBER & DRUMMOND, 2009).
They did allowed far more people inside the building on event day as was permitted. The police also found some drug in the office behind the stage where the team organizer and their staff took their breaks. (“Charges over Thailand club fire,” 2010).Relate to the event impacts and legacies theory. What happened at Zantika nightclub had an impact on this event, sadly the impact was of negative nature only, including the negative community image, assumed substance abuse had a negative impact on the social and cultural environment. The environmental impact this event had included the impact of pollution because of the smoke, noise disturbance and traffic congestion that effected people in and around these areas during the New Year night.
The last impact was on tourism and the economy.Government had to pay money to the victims of this accident, which is a financial loss. The owner and stakeholder of this nightclub obviously did not gain any profit from this event but lost money on fines, bail and indemnity. The biggest impact on the country is losing the trust from the tourisst and this event also damaged the country’s reputation. Nevertheless after the accident had passed for 1-2 months some people on social networks started to be curious and talk about that there might be someone behind this accident who did the fire on purpose.They even pointed out and posted the photo as evidence to prove their hypothesis including; the name of the event which is “Good bye Zantika”, the theme of their website which is flame on the black background, the poster on the event with black ashes line on the presenter’s face look like they are crying, the name of the band who were playing on the day was ‘burn’ and the way they decorated the nightclub with cross on the wall and used coffin as the counter.
Some christens religion stepped in and told off the owner of Zantika nightclub that it shows the rudeness, un-respectful and impact a lot in the religion aspect.They said it was unacceptable to decorate a nightclub to look like a gothic cathedral and put a coffin and cross on the wall. However on one can approve if this hypothesis is true or not and leaves this topic mystery in people’s mind until now (Pice, 2009). To create an event is a very challenging task for the entire event manager to deal with both of the positive and negative impacts and trying to achieve a positive impact only. To be able to achieve and gain a positive impact from the variety of media articles. The event managers need an ability to predict and identify the impacts.
Good planning and awareness management plan can minimize the negative impact from media reports and build the positive impact including strong image of the organization (Allen, 2011). As the result of lack knowledge and unprepared of Zantika nightclub organization that caused the fire and kill 66 people in this accident. All the media articles did talked only the failure and careless of their organization and leaves a lot of negative impact to the owner and team of Zantiga nightclub.