Alarms briefly shutter cabaret

By Elise Franco

The fire department has had almost 20 alarm-activation calls to the cabaret since April.

AUSTINTOWN — The Go Go Cabaret was cleared by the township fire department to reopen Wednesday afternoon.

Fire Chief Andy Frost Jr. said a call that the club’s fire alarm was continuously sounding came in to the department about 1:45 a.m. Wednesday. All employees and patrons of the club and the adjoining Economy Inn were evacuated for safety reasons, Frost said. Thirteen patrons were forced to leave the hotel, which will remain closed until the state fire marshal runs an inspection.

Frost said because the alarm system has been in need of repairs for nearly a year and was deemed unsafe, the Clarkins Drive club was shut down.

“The alarms kept going off, and no one there pays attention to it,” he said. “We’ve had problems with it time and time again.”

Frost said club owner Sebastian Rucci had the appropriate maintenance work done, including replacing five smoke detectors Wednesday.

“Our fire inspector went down and did tests on all the alarms,” Frost said. “They reopened probably around 4 p.m.”

Rucci did not return phone calls to comment Wednesday.

Fire Inspector Rick Milliron said dust and road debris that built up over time in the furnace and air ducts likely caused the malfunctioning alarms.

“All of that debris contaminates the duct work then blows out through there into the smoke and heat detectors,” he said.

Milliron said Rucci hired a company to clean the alarms in the past, but it’s not enough.

“They clean out the alarms, but they still have all the dust in the duct work,” he said. “It’s an issue of maintaining the systems.”

Since April 2009, 18 alarm activation or false alarm calls have come in to the fire department from the club and hotel, according to department records, and Frost said he’s had enough.

“These [false alarm] calls take time away from more important calls,” he said. “

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