Fire in Saemann Student Center

Smoke filled a laundry room in the basement of the Saemann Student Center at approximately 10 p.m. Sunday, said Graham Garner, associate vice president for Marketing and Communication.

Mary Brecht, a Den worker, contacted security when she noticed a strange smell while at work.

“They (security) came to investigate and they too detected an odor, no smoke of any kind, but an odd odor,” Garner said. “They went to contact facility services, and when they returned they found that the room was actually filled up with quite a bit of smoke.”

Garner said the electricity was turned off and the few people in the building were told to evacuate. The Waverly Fire Department was contacted and arrived shortly.

“It’s unclear at this point what the source of the fire was or at least the smoke,” Garner said.

The fire department and campus security will work together to investigate the cause of the fire and assess the damages.

There were no injuries and the incident will not affect operations at the Den or Mensa, Garner said.

Ben Engelken, a student worker at the Den, said he saw fire fighters bringing out what looked like flaming towels in a laundry basket.

The basket and towels were extinguished by fire fighters behind the student center.

Tim Mattson, another student worker at the Den, said Brecht noticed the smell before any of the students.

“Thank God she said something; we had to evacuate,” Mattson said.

More information to come as the story develops.

Leave a Reply