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Federal list of safe structures flawed

Richard Whitt of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the Holiday Inn & Suites, where a fire killed a South Carolina man on Sunday, improperly made the U.S. Fire Administration's "National Master List" of structures deemed safe for federal employees while on government business. To get on the list, a hotel or motel owner has to certify that the building has smoke detectors and, if it's over three stories tall, sprinklers. The Marietta hotel was deleted from the list this week after a fire and fire investigators revealed that the seven-story structure had no sprinkler system in the rooms. "The cause of what fire officials are calling the worst hotel fire in Marietta history, which also injured 20 others, remains under investigation." The investigation found that, according to FEMA records, the Federal Emergency Management Agency paid to house Hurricane Katrina evacuees there for one night in the past few months.

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