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Second Dayton Evacuation This Week Due To Construction

By on Nov 13 2013.
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Jonathan Dayton High School Construction

Jonathan Dayton High School Construction

This morning, students at Jonathan Dayton High School were again evacuated as a result of issues related to construction work.  On Monday, smoke in the cafeteria caused a nearly 20 minute evacuation.  In both incidents, the Springfield Fire Department responded to conduct an inspection and ensure the safety of the school occupants.

In an e-mail message Principal Elizabeth Cresci noted, “We had to evacuate the building today at approximately 9:45 am due to smoke in a cafeteria closet.  The students were evacuated to the back parking lot, where they were assembled for about 30 minutes, after which they were moved to the main gym.  Students returned to their regular instructional day at approximately 10:30.”

Work is being done to the brick façade of the high school and it is a major project that has required scaffolding and fencing around the eastern portion of the building closest to the cafeteria.  It doesn’t appear officials are pleased with the impact it is having on the school day.  Cresci explained, “The contractor for the  brick façade work has been ordered to stop work until he can remedy the issue.   I am hopeful that today’s disruption will be the last due to this contractor issue.”  However, official reports offer additional insight into the construction problems.  According to incident report, the Fire Department notified the Township Construction Official that welding had been occurring without an approved fire safety permit and they requested a stop work order.  The Fire Official posted a stop work order.

At least three fire department vehicles responded to the scene after a call reporting smoke came in at approximately 9:43 a.m.  The smoke was thought to be a result of welding.  Firefighters discovered “heavy smoke” inside the storage room in the cafeteria.  Upon noticing fire charring around a window frame inside the room, they proceeded to extinguish the fire with water.  Additional firefighter crews expertly checked the rest of the area and used a thermal imaging camera to confirm no additional safety concerns existed.  The members of the Fire Department that responded are Firefighters Pagnotta, Vigilante, Ruck, Popolo, Heinrich, Tutela, and Balke, Captains Mastroeni and Corea, and Chief Sanford and Deputy Chief Palumbo.  The Madison Regional Health Department inspected the cafeteria kitchen for smoke contamination and the Springfield Police Department Detective Bureau responded for photo documentation.



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