Shell Named in R.I. Nightclub Fire Lawsuit

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Shell Named in R.I. Nightclub Fire Lawsuit

05/29/2003
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - A judge yesterday allowed an attorney representing survivors of a deadly nightclub fire to add Shell Oil Co. as a defendant in a federal lawsuit.

Attorney Ronald Resmini told the Associated Press he sought to add Houston-based Shell Oil Co. and its affiliate, Motiva Enterprises, because The Station nightclub owners distributed concert tickets from a Shell gas station they owned. "They were giving away free tickets if you bought so much merchandise," Resmini said.

The February fire that killed 100 people and injured nearly 200 began when sparks from a band's pyrotechnic display ignited foam on the club's walls.

Shell spokesman Shawn Frederick said the company does not comment on pending litigation but company officials intend to "vigorously defend" the suit.

The lawsuit also names the club owners, Anheuser-Busch Inc., the town of West Warwick and American Foam Corp.