Members of the DIY Community Compile Harm Reduction Measures for Venue Operators

In the wake of the Oakland fire, a group of architects and artists release a Google doc of suggestions to help secure DIY buildings.
December 6, 2016, 8:23pm
Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

In response to the warehouse fire in Oakland that left 36 people dead, members of the DIY community have put together a list of harm reduction measures for venue operators.

A loose coalition of architects, venue owners, and artists has put together an open Google doc detailing free, or low-cost safety modifications for venues and members of the public to implement. These include de-cluttering spaces, clearing obstructions to doorways, clearly marking exits, and having an emergency plan.

The suggestions also reference the importance of reaching out to local communities for support. "Many of us are contractors, electricians, plumbers, construction workers, architects, firefighters, acousticians, food safety experts, etc. who might be willing to at least evaluate your conditions, suggest options, or rank the urgency of changes needed," the document says.

The document was started by S. Surface, an unlicensed architectural designer and long-term DIY music community member based in Seattle. The document's authors emphasize it not a comprehensive manual for safety, or a replacement for involving licensed experts and meeting building codes.

The deadly blaze at the DIY art space, Ghost Ship, broke out on Friday night and raged into the early hours of the following morning. The cause of the fire is still unknown, but a criminal investigation has been launched.

Members of the electronic music community, including Venus X and RVNG Intl, have come together in the fundraiser effort for the victims of the fire.