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Fire Sprinkler Floods University's Gym with Inches of Water

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Copyright 2013 Richmond Newspapers, Inc.
All Rights Reserved

Richmond Times Dispatch (Virginia)
November 3, 2013 Sunday
Final Edition
METRO; Pg. B-08
263 words
Fire sprinkler floods courtsat VCU gym
From staff reports

Water pouring out of a malfunctioning fire sprinkler Saturday evening inundated VCU's Cary Street Gym.

An 8:07 p.m. fire alarm brought Richmond firefighters to the gym at 101 S. Linden St.

"We found a sprinkler that broke in the gym" in a spontaneous malfunction, pouring water on a basketball court and part of another, said Richmond Fire Battalion Chief Kent Taylor. There was no fire.

According to a Virginia Commonwealth University spokeswoman, "An error in the sprinkler system caused one of the sprinklers to activate, which automatically activated the fire alarm." That occurred at 8:06 p.m., she said.

"There were 2 to 3 inches of standing water on the basketball court," the VCU spokeswoman said.

The university did not have an estimate of the amount of damage from the incident.

"There's a ton of water on the floor," Taylor said, noting that the incident would likely damage the courts' floors. Firefighters used squeegees to move the water out of the building.

Five fire engines responded to the alarm, he said, and firefighters then had to find the shutoffs to turn off the water from the overhead sprinkler.

VCU police also responded to the alarm, the university spokeswoman said.

Used by the VCU Recreational Sports program, the Cary Street Gym has four courts for basketball, volleyball, table tennis and badminton; two indoor pools; an 18,000-square-foot fitness center; an indoor running track; and two racquetball courts, among other facilities.

Copyright © 2013, The Richmond Times-Dispatch and may not be republished without permission. E-mail library@timesdispatch.com

November 5, 2013

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