downtownexpress.com

Volume 19 • Issue 13 | August 11 - 17, 2006

Office evacuated after small fire

Downtown Express photo by Tequila Minsky
Workers outside 161 Sixth Ave. as firefighters put out a mechanical fire.

A small fire erupted in the 15-story office building on 161 Sixth Ave. Wed. Aug. 9 around 5 p.m. Everyone from the building was forced to evacuate, but there were no injuries.

The flare up near Spring St. occurred in the elevator machinery equipment room on the top floor, setting off alarms throughout the whole building The electrical relays in the equipment room heated up and started the fire, said Jack Collins, the Fire Dept.’s Chief of Battalion 2.

“They were old and they over heated,” said Collins, who described the fire as small.

Floods of office workers crowded the sidewalks. With no visible smoke or flames, none of the workers seemed too concerned. The Janovic home design store on the ground floor was allowed to stay open.

Phillip Ma, who works on the 8th floor, used the break from work to chat with his girlfriend on his cell phone. He said he just needed to get back into the building to get his jacket. He and others were allowed back within an hour.

The four engines and three ladders that had rushed to the scene with lights and sirens blaring just a short while ago slowly dissipated from 6th Ave. leaving all as it was before.

— Janet Kwon



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