Cinema ceiling falls; 9 injured
CEBU CITY—A day after nine people were injured when the ceiling of a mall theater collapsed on Monday night, Mayor Michael Rama said he would meet all cinema owners to tell them to check their facilities.
Rama said he had instructed the Office of the Building Official (OBO) and the city engineer’s office to inspect Cinema 5 of Ayala Center Cebu and find out what really happened.
“This is a timely warning for concerned individuals to take a look at our civil structures. What happened to Ayala has a message to convey to owners of all movie houses,” he said.
At least 350 people were inside the cinema to attend the ad campaign launch of crazydomains.com.au by Dreamscape Inc. about 8:50 p.m. when water suddenly poured from the ceiling at the upper level. As those occupying the upper seats started to move down to avoid getting wet, a portion of the ceiling fell.
All those wounded were treated on site, said Jeanette Japzon, corporate communications manager of Cebu Holdings Inc., which owns Ayala Center Cebu. Five, however, were brought to the hospital to undergo medical examination and were due for release on Tuesday.
Most of the injuries were cuts in the hands, feet and shoulders.
Based on findings of Ayala mall engineers, Japzon said the sprinkler system released water that caused the acoustic boards to fall. “We are further investigating the cause,” she said on Tuesday.
Cinema 5 is the newest among the five theaters inside Ayala Center Cebu, which is located inside Cebu Business Park, a financial and commercial hub. Located on the fourth floor of the mall’s new wing, Cinema 5 opened in December 2013.
Operations of the four other theaters in the main building were not disrupted. These have a separate sprinker system, according to Japson. Ador Vincent S. Mayol and Doris C. Bongcac, Inquirer Visayas
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