Coldplay caused chaos at the BBC after their road crew forced HQ Broadcasting House to be evacuated TWICE.
As fire alarms went off, Radio 3 and Radio 4 were briefly pulled off the air while grumbling staff were made to assemble on pavements outside the building in central London. The band were there on Friday to record a live show put out the next day. Lighting technicians got the blame. What made it worse was they had insisted their preparations wouldn’t interfere with the building’s safety systems.
You may remember Roadie #42 commenting in his latest blog:
There was a particularly amusing roadie tale doing the rounds as stage-time approached this evening, though. Apparently, the lampies loaded in and started programming the previous night. Now, when pointing beams of light, it's much easier to see them if there's a bit of "fog". Apparently, Sparky (our lovely lighting man) dutifully checked that there would be no trouble with smoke detectors. After being assured that all was well, he pumped out a rather generous amount, ready to get to work. Somewhat inevitably, the BBC's smoke detectors had a major panic attack.
This led to the whole building being evacuated. Apparently the BBC chaps were most apologetic to him and took the heat (probably not the best phrase under the circumstances, I agree...). They assured all concerned that their errant fire alarm system had been recalibrated and that all would be well. The fire chief was less than sure and insisted that before he leave, the smoke machines were fired up again. Needless to say, alarm bells and flashing lights ensued and all and sundry were out on the pavement once again. Apparently, the result of all this fun and games was that Radio 3 and Radio 4 ended up being off air for some time. Now if this man's smoke machine trigger-finger can bring down two national radio stations, empty an entire building and summon half the London Fire Brigade, you really do have to wonder what it was he did that earned him the nickname Sparky...
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