On March 25, 1911, a fire broke out in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York’s Greenwich Village. Workers tried to make their way out of the congested loft, but the doors on their floor were locked and the fire escape soon crumpled.Huge piles of trimmings fed the flames and petrified workers desperately tried to make their way downstairs. Hundreds of horrified on-lookers arrived just in time to see young men and women jumping from the windows. By the time the fire had burned itself out, 146 people were dead. Less than two years earlier, the workers of the factory had been leaders in an industry-wide strike to protest dismal wages and dangerous working conditions. Most of the workers returned to their shops without having their demands met. It took the tragedy of the fire and the ensuing public outrage to force government action. The landmark legislation that followed gave New Yorkers the most comprehensive workplace safety laws in the country.