ABC Evening News for Monday, Jun 27, 1977
View other clips in this broadcast →
Material supplied by VTNA may be used for educational analysis or research only. Any editing, reproduction, publication, rebroadcast, public showing or public display may be prohibited by copyright laws.
(Studio) Tennessee officials will bring arson charges, with others pending, against juvenile, in Columbia, Tennessee, prison fire. 42 died at Maury Cnty. jail, mostly from smoke inhalation.
REPORTER: Harry Reasoner
(Columbia, Tennessee) Speculation is that juvenile started fire by setting padding in cell afire with cigarette or match possibly obtained from prison visitor. Padding of this type used in other prisons in Tennessee and perhaps elswhere. [Dist. attorney general Robert GAY - says material was purchased with understanding that it was nonflammable.] Tests had been made on padding, but had raised questions. [State division of fire prevention spokesperson Tom COPELAND - says test results were good, but it's now found tests weren't appropriate.]
REPORTER: Brit Hume
(NYC) Reporter notes 1973 "Closeup" documentary on fire. (Film shown.) Plastic foam used in tests for documentary and as used in Tennessee prison is consumed in moments, with dense black smoke and highly flammable gases; only apparent difference in tests and prison situation is that foam at prison covered with thin layer of polyvinylchloride. After documentary, most major building codes were toughened, to require plastic foam to be protected by fireproof covering. Experts say new regulations needed on content of furniture and interiors.
REPORTER: Jules Bergman
Note to sponsor members: The Vanderbilt Television News Archive video player requires a modern operating system and browser to work properly. If you are experiencing playback problems, check the minimum requirements and adjust your setup accordingly. After adjustments, if you continue to experience problems, please contact us.
Welcome! Above is the abstract of the item that you're interested in viewing from the Vanderbilt Television News Archive's collection. You have three options if you'd like to view this item:
If you believe that you are associated with a sponsoring college or university and have received this message in error, please let us know.