Reader Tyler S
had some excellent feedback about the “Maker’s Muse” image that I ran last week
showing a set of stairs made entirely out of wooden pallets:
I felt compelled to reach out to you about the pallet stairs that you included in your newsletter today. I’m in the Bay Area, and while the picture you included really does it for me, I feel that there should also be a word of warning to temper the inspiration anyone might feel. I’m not sure if you remember the Ghostship warehouse fire that happened in Oakland a number of years ago, but from what I recall, one of the primary causes of death was a flimsy, flammable staircase made of pallets. There was obviously a lot of other things at play, that building codes and such would address, but when the fire started and there wasn’t another way out; people lost their lives. Anyways, forgive my ramble, and have a good weekend!
I indeed remember this fire. I had friends who lost friends in it. And yes, lots of pallet (and other makeshift) construction provided deadly fuel for that inferno. The point of those “Maker’s Muse” images is to get people to think creatively, outside the box, or give a laugh, but in real-world applications, things like fire codes and safety obviously need to always be considered. I should’ve at least mentioned such safety and common sense sobriety. My bad.