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June 15, 2012 at 8:34 PM

Electrical fire causes minor damage at UW building in South Lake Union

Plumes of black smoke filled the sky near Eighth Avenue and Republican Street about 7:30 p.m. as malfunctioning electrical panels inside an unfinished University of Washington building burned.

Firefighters quickly responded to multiple reports of the smoke and put the fire out in minutes, but only because they were able to immediately raise a three-story ladder straight to the center of the third floor, said Kyle Moore, spokesman for the King County Fire Dept.

The eight-story building’s standpipe, which Moore says provides firefighters a same-story fire-hose hookup, wasn’t working. If windows had been installed already, firefighters would have had a more time-intensive task of dragging a fire-hose up three stories of stairs.

No one was inside the building when it started.

Fire investigators estimated the cost of damage to be $30,000 to the building and $20,000 to its contents.

When fully constructed, the building will be an extension of UW’s South Lake Union medical campus.

Comments | Topics: fire, King County Fire Department, Kyle Moore

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