MOSCOW - The fire chief of a Russian city where a nightclub blaze killed 119 revelers was suspended along with five subordinates yesterday, and authorities said inspection records for the club appear to have been falsified.
President Dmitry A. Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin urged a broad review of fire regulations, demanding tougher enforcement and lambasting officials and businesspeople for their irresponsibility.
The blaze at the Lame Horse nightclub in the city of Perm broke out early Saturday when an indoor fireworks display ignited the plastic ceiling. The blaze spread swiftly while the hundreds of customers tried to flee through a single exit. About 130 people were hospitalized, scores with severe burns. More victims died yesterday, bringing the death toll to 119, the Emergency Situations Ministry said.
A top ministry official, Yuri Deshyovikh, said that the paperwork showed the club's fire-safety measures had been approved in 2003 by a man who had left his post as a fire inspector the previous year. "It's clear that it's criminal," he said, according to the ITAR-Tass news agency.