Tag Archives: Minnesota

Virginia, MN – Sprinkler system contained fire at mall; No injuries reported

Fire broke out at the Uptown Mall in Virginia Thursday afternoon.

Pictures from the Northland Fire Wire showed dark, black smoke coming from the building.

The Fire Wire reported that the flames were contained to a storage area thanks to the mall’s sprinkler system.

Multiple area fire departments responded.

Nobody was injured.

The cause is being investigated by the Virginia Fire Marshal’s Office.

Uptown Mall was formerly known as the Thunderbird Mall.

St. Cloud, MN – Sprinkler system activated for fire at Salvation Army

A fire at St. Cloud Salvation Army’s emergency shelter forced dozens of people out of the place they were calling home for the holidays.

According to the St. Cloud Fire Department, the fire started around 3:45 a.m. Monday. Fire damage was limited to one room because of the sprinkler system.

Lt. Nathan North of the St. Cloud Salvation Army feels fortunate the fire didn’t spread but says the water damage left most of their space needing full renovations.

“In that moment, it just, it fell off, and my heart sank,” North said about getting the phone call about the fire.

“Unfortunately, our shelter [became] unsafe to be in until we can assess everything,” North said. “So unfortunately, it displaces all of our residents that are here with us.”

That’s around 40 people, many of whom are now with Place of Home Ministries.

“It’s terrible for the people,” Pastor Carol Smith, with Place of Home Ministries, said.

“We were able to get [a floor at] our facility ready that we were not occupying at the moment, miraculously,” Smith said.

She adds pillows, blankets, and bedding would be warmly welcomed and that donations can be dropped off at 511 9th Ave. N. in St. Cloud.

“We’re just trying to provide what we can for support and all that this holiday season,” Smith said.

As for the St. Cloud Salvation Army, North is asking people not to share physical donations with them as they work to clean up their facility. He added that donating to the Salvation Army’s red kettles is the best way to help.

The State Fire Marshal’s Office is investigating the cause of the fire.

Rochester, MN – Sprinkler system extinguishes fire at hotel; No injuries reported

Fire forced the evacuation of a hotel Tuesday night.

The Rochester Fire Department says it was called to Candlewood Suites – Rochester Mayo Clinic Area just after 7:30 pm.  Firefighters arrived to find an evacuation underway due to a fire alarm and encountered smoke in a hallway.

The Fire Department says the hotel’s sprinkler system had extinguished flames in a single room.  No one was injured in this incident but the hotel room suffered smoke and water damage.

The Rochester Police Department and the Red Cross assisted at the scene.

The Fire Department responded to this incident with units E16, E5, BC1, E1, E2, E3, T12, and Fire Marshal 4.

Bemidji, MN – Sprinkler system activated for fire at high school

Bemidji Firefighters are crediting a sprinkler system for helping contain a fire at the Bemidji High School.

The fire department was dispatched to Bemidji High school just after 11:30 p.m. on Friday, October 20, for a report of a smoke alarm activation.

As crews entered the building and searched for the cause of the alarm, they found a smoke-filled hallway with water flowing on the south side of the building. Using a thermal imaging camera and water can extinguisher, firefighters were able to extinguish a fire in a custodian closet.

Firefighters were on the scene for approximately three hours and it took 14 firefighters to help with water removal and clean up. The room where the fire started suffered moderate smoke and water damage, while adjacent classrooms and hallways sustained water damage.

The fire is under investigation, but appears to be electrical in nature.

Bemidji Fire Department was assisted at the scene by the Bemidji Area Schools, Bemidji Police Department, Bemidji Ambulance Service and Minnesota State Fire Marshal.

Winona, MN – Sprinkler system activated for fire in historic mansion; No injuries reported

Twelve residents of the historic Huff-Lamberton mansion in Winona are displaced after a fire broke out around 2:31 a.m. Friday.

The fire was confined to a common area near the entrance to the mansion, according to the Winona Police Department.

The fire, which required off-duty firefighters to be called for assistance, resulted in minor fire, smoke and water damage to the building.

The fire did not result in any injuries, but the department reported one resident had to be assisted in evacuating the building by firefighters.

The residents of the mansion are being assisted by the Red Cross to find new housing.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

The mansion was sold earlier this year to the Kappa Chi Fraternity for $1.85 million, over double the estimated market value of the mansion, according to Winona County’s commercial sale records.

Kappa Chi chapter president Creighton Butler said that the fraternity has not moved into the mansion yet and the residents had leases from before the purchase of the property.

He said the sprinkler system activated and helped contain the fire to the common space. The building’s fire alarm system automatically reported the blaze to the Winona Fire Department.

Butler said there was “a lot to be figured out still” for the fraternity regarding its plans to move into the mansion.

The mansion, built in 1857 by one of Winona’s founders, Henry Huff, has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1976.

Owatonna, MN – Sprinkler system controls fire at business; No injuries reported

Authorities are investigating a fire at a business in Owatonna.

It happened just before 11:30 p.m. Tuesday at Nelson Decorating Center, located at 121 Oakdale Street SW.

According to the Owatonna Fire Department (OFD), the sprinkler system at the business controlled the blaze until crews arrived to put out the remaining flames.

Firefighters stayed on scene for roughly two hours to help ventilate the building.

The cause of the fire is unknown. Damages are estimated at $350,000.

The neighboring business, Sherwin Williams, had minor smoke and water damage.

OFD said no one was hurt.

“Having a working sprinkler system helped prevent more extensive damage to the business,” said Ed Hoffman, the Owatonna Fire Chief. “This is a great reminder for other businesses that have sprinkler and fire alarm systems to have them inspected regularly to ensure they are working properly.”

The Owatonna Police Department and the Minnesota State Fire Marshal’s Office assisted OFD at the scene.

Chaska, MN – Sprinkler system activated for fire at high school; No injuries reported

The sprinklers triggered a water flow alarm and the alarm company called the Chaska Fire Department.

“Thanks to the sprinkler system and the fast response of the fire department the fire was put out quickly,” a Facebook post from Eastern Carver County Schools stated. “We are grateful for their support. No one was harmed but staff are working to assess damage.”

Most of the damage from the incident was from the water, according to Celi Haga, the district’s director of communications and community engagement.

Haga said that the school would “be ready to welcome back students and staff on Monday.”

Chaska’s Deputy Fire Chief Kevin Gravalin said that the fire was “nothing major because of the sprinklers. It was controlled. But without the sprinklers he said it “could have been catastrophic, so definitely very lucky to have the sprinkler system.”

Gravalin said that the insurance company is investigating the other lights in the building. “The message from us was to make sure that they have somebody take a look at it,” he added.

Rochester, MN – Sprinkler system activated for fire at lab; No injuries reported

Rochester Fire Department (RFD) responded to a report of a closet fire inside Limb Lab Monday morning.

When firefighters arrived, they found smoke in the building and an evacuation was in progress.

Firefighters located the fire and extinguished it with a pressurized water can. Other RFD crews searched for victims and worked to locate the sprinkler system controls to shut it off.

Fans were set up in the building to ventilate the smoke.

The fire caused a small amount of damage to the contents of the closet and there was some water damage to the first floor and basement.

There were no injuries.

Automatic fire sprinkler systems limited the growth of the fire and provided occupants valuable time to evacuate. In this incident, fire damage was limited to the room of origin and RFD said it serves as another great example of how sprinkler systems can save lives and property.

Minneapolis, MN – Sprinkler system activated for overnight arson fire at Target

Minneapolis police say a burglary suspect confessed to starting a fire inside the Target Express on Lake Street after breaking in to the store early Tuesday morning. 

Police spokesman Officer Garrett Parten says squads were dispatched to the store at 1300 West Lake Street around 3:40 a.m. after reports of a business burglary. Responding officers noticed a damaged door, went into the Target and found a suspect inside. While that man was being booked he reportedly told police he had started a fire inside a garbage can. 

Parten says the fire activated a sprinkler inside the store. 

Fire crews arrived about 5 minutes later, laid down water lines and extinguished what little remained of the fire and subsequent hot spots. The building sprinklers were then shut down. 

At this point there are no reports on the extent of water damage caused by the incident. 

Roseville, MN – Sprinkler system activated for arson fire at Salvation Army Service Center

Officials say a Brooklyn Park Salvation Army Service Center was set on fire and vandalized Thursday night. 

A man police said is known to them was taken into custody in connection with the break-in and fire. The building’s chapel suffered damage from the arson, but the fire was “contained with the help of the building’s sprinkler system,” according to a press release. 

The suspect also reportedly destroyed the building’s windows and office areas. Officials say he was seen on security footage “piling a chair and new coats onto a pew in the chapel and lighting it on fire.”

“This has been devastating to our staff here,” said Captain Josh Polanco, who leads the Brooklyn Park service center. “Our food shelf here is fairly new, and membership at our church has been growing. But we will make the necessary repairs, because the families in the community rely on us for assistance.”

The service center was preparing to distribute winter coats, which would have taken place on Friday. The Salvation Army is asking for coat donations of all sizes, for adults and kids, to replace those that were damaged in the fire.

“We know at least 200 coats, which were damaged already– those we have to replace,” Lt. Colonel Dan Jennings said. “And we think more people will need coats as well, and today is a great reminder it does get cold in the Twin Cities.”

 The coats can be dropped off starting Monday, Nov. 7 at 10011 Noble Parkway. Or you can specific donate to the coat program here.

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