None Injured In Echo Arena Carpark Blaze

The last performance of Liverpool, England’s famous International Horse Show on Dec. 31 had to be canceled because of a blaze in the multi-story carpark next to Echo Arena

Echo Arena Car Park Fire
Peter Byrne / PA via AP
– Echo Arena Car Park Fire
Liverpool’s International Horse Show had to be canceled when a fire broke out in the multi-story carpark next to Echo Arena Dec. 31. None were injured – human or horse.

Nobody got injured, be it humans or horses. Eighty animals that were stabled on the ground floor of the car park were evacuated in time.

The fire started in the afternoon of Dec. 31 for yet unknown reasons. According to Liverpool’s mayor Joe Anderson, a Land Rover on the third level of the car park caught fire, which subsequently spread to the other vehicles in the building, all of which got destroyed completely according to Merseyside Police. A total of 1,305 vehicles were in the car park prior to the fire breaking out.

At times, 21 fire engines were on site to tackle the blaze, working all night alongside police, ambulance and the staff of ACC Liverpool, which operates Echo Arena.

During the afternoon, a joint decision was taken to cancel the last show of the Liverpool International Horse Show, due at 7:30 p.m.

Information desks were set up in the surrounding hotels and Liverpool city council opened temporary shelters for anyone not able to make it home. Private individuals offered shelter on social media and through the mayor’s office as well.

An update from Echo Arena that same evening read: “The possibility of rescheduling tonight’s show to tomorrow [Jan. 1] has been discussed, but unfortunately this has not proven possible.”

Ticket holders are being refunded. Mayor Anderson thanked the emergency services as well as the staff of ACC Liverpool. “They’ve worked hard to help everyone they can who has been affected by last night’s fire, giving up their NYE. Very proud of all the staff who work there,” he tweeted.

Merseyside Police tweeted in the early morning of Jan. 1: “Joint working at its best.”

Nina Barbour, president of Liverpool Horse Show, said: “I would like to express my immense thanks and gratitude to the emergency services, the Echo Arena staff, riders, grooms and support staff, the general public and the City of Liverpool following Sunday night’s events.

“The understanding of everybody who were preparing to celebrate New Years’ Eve and were left in Liverpool with no transport was nothing short of remarkable, and the offers of help and support from people – they ran into the hundreds – for anyone who needed assistance will never be forgotten.”

Barbour said the incident shouldn’t belie “what we achieved in the first five sessions of the show, and we will be back to do it again next December.”

ACC Liverpool told Pollstar in a statement that its events program will proceed as planned at Echo Arena.

Next up on the arena’s schedule is “Fast and Furious Live,” Jan. 11-12, followed by “Celebrating Sgt Pepper: Live on Jan. 13.”

Bob Prattey, chief executive of The ACC Liverpool Group, said: “We can confirm that our future events will be able to proceed as planned following the serious fire which was contained in the Liverpool Waterfront Car Park on New Year’s Eve. We will continue to communicate with all our clients who are organizing forthcoming conferences, exhibitions and entertainment events as well as customers and delegates.”

Prattey and his team are now sorting alternative parking arrangements for upcoming events at ACC’s venues, which, besides Echo Arena, also include the city’s Exhibition Center as well as the BT Convention Center, all located on Liverpool’s waterfront.

“We ask for everyone’s patience and understanding while we work through these plans,” he said.