Breaking the Aquarium in a Berlin Hotel: An Inquiry into American Designers

Breaking the Aquarium in a Berlin Hotel: An Inquiry into American Designers

BERLIN — An American company that helped build a large aquarium in Berlin is sending a team to investigate when the tank exploded, sending waves of debris, water and tropical fish into the lobby of the hotel where it was located and onto the street outside. .

Reynolds Polymer Technology, which says it manufactured and installed the AquaDom tank cylinder components 20 years ago, said in an email that it was “too early to determine the factor(s) that produced such a failure.”

Police said they found no evidence of foul play, but the cause of the dramatic wreck, which occurred shortly before 6 a.m. Friday, left two people with minor injuries.

Berlin’s top security official, Iris Spranger, told German news agency Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa) on Friday that “initial signs point to material exhaustion.”

The hotel building was deemed safe late Friday, officials said.

The local government said nearly all of the 1,500 fish inside the tank died when it exploded, but “some of the fish at the bottom of the tank” were saved. About 400 to 500 small fish from individual tanks placed below the hotel lobby were evacuated unharmed to other tanks in a nearby tank.

The AquaDom aquarium opened in December 2003 and was upgraded in 2020.

Reynolds Polymer of Grand Junction, Colorado, says on its website that 41 acrylic panels were used to create the tank cylinder. The company expresses its “genuine concern” for the affected hotel guests and workers and the injured. “We are deeply saddened by the loss of animals and aquatic life.”

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