UPDATE: Bridgeport High School fire caused by floor buffer

Photo courtesy of James Rowcroft
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A Sunday night fire at Bridgeport High School was contained to the boiler room but kept firefighters on scene for about two hours to clear smoke from the school.

“It started from a floor buffer that runs off LP gas. There could have been a leak with the LP tank or the buffer could have malfunctioned,” said Bridgeport Fire Chief Phil Hart. “There was heavy smoke on the first floor and some smoke on the second floor.”

A janitor who had been operating the floor buffer discovered the fire and called 911. Upon arrival, firefighters discovered flames and heavy smoke. After extinguishing the fire and getting the LP tank outside, they ventilated the building to free it from smoke and odor. Hart said smoke alarms at the school activated. No one was injured and the only damage was to the machine itself, Hart said. There was an odor.

Responding to the fire were Bridgeport, Anmoore, Nutter Fort and Shinnston fire departments, all who were at a Maple Lake structure fire less than an hour before being dispatched to the BHS fire, around 10 p.m.

“We were just finishing up operations there when we were dispatched to an alarm at Bridgeport High School,” Hart said.

The Maple Lake incident, he said, was a chimney fire at a residence and was confined to the chimney with no damage to the structure.

“There was a birds’ nest or bees’ nest inside the chimney and it caught on fire,” Hart said.

That call, fortunately, wrapped up quickly, he said.

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Crews are currently on scene of a working fire at Bridgeport High School. According to officials, the fire broke out in the boiler room of the High School.

Bridgeport, Shinnston, Anmoore and Nutter Fort Fire Departments are currently on scene.

There are currently no reported injuries.