The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Monday March 27th

Lamp Sparks Fire in Craige

Robert Bosworth, deputy chief of operations with the Chapel Hill Fire Department, said no one was in the room when the fire started about 1 p.m.

An e-mail to Craige residents from Lisa Wells, assistant director of residential education, stated that the fire started when a halogen desk lamp fell onto a mattress. The e-mail also stated the residents of the room have been temporarily relocated while the room is repaired.

Bosworth said the fire and its damage were limited to the room it started in and that smoke and water damage were limited to the suite. "It was a fire that got a little past starting and then went back to a smolder," Bosworth said.

About 1 p.m. alarms sounded to evacuate the building. Firefighters arrived on the scene and extinguished the fire.

Freshman Tiffany McGinnis, who lives directly above where the fire occurred, said she and her roommate smelled the smoke. "Smoke started coming in our room," McGinnis said. "But the fire alarms weren't going off."

She said it was about five to 10 minutes before the alarm sounded.

Rebecca Casey, assistant housing director, said the delay in the alarm would be investigated. She said this summer fire alarms were installed in each room of Craige. These alarms trigger the hall alarms that evacuate the building.

Jeff McCracken, deputy director of the Department of Public Safety, said students should not wait for the alarm to sound if they think a fire might be in progress.

"Students shouldn't hesitate any time they smell smoke or anything suspicious," he said. "They shouldn't wait. They should go ahead and call us."

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