Fire forces evacuation at Towers dorms
September 16, 2008 3:16 PM
The Towers at Centennial Square were evacuated Tuesday afternoon when a fire broke out on the second floor.
Battalion Chief Tony Smerdel of Battalion No. 9 on Ocean Avenue said that a plastic pot that a resident had left on a burning stove had caused the fire.
“They were probably too busy studying,” Chief Smerdel said with a smile after the fire had been contained.
Residents crowded outside the front of the building while four fire trucks parked in front of the Towers and raised their ladders up towards the roof.
Some residents expressed fear and confusion. “I thought I might have been hallucinating. But I smelled smoke and grabbed my purse and ran,” resident Bree Taylor said. Taylor, a freshman, also lives on the second floor.
Third floor resident Tim Rottenberg said that the smoke “kind of smelled like the grilled cheese I burned last night.”
Other residents weren’t aware right away that there had been a fire in the building. First floor resident Ben Baker said that he had been home and didn’t know that there had been a fire until the Towers alarm went off.
Battalion Chief Smerdel said that they received word of the fire at 11 minutes after 2. Upon arrival, Battalion No. 9 met up with UPD and went to the second floor room where the fire took place. Smerdel said that there was “ a lot of smoke on the floor.” After tracking down which room the fire was coming from, the team removed the burning pot from the stove and ventilated the room.
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