Fire at Amherst College’s Science Center leaves smoke, water damage

Hampshire County

AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – No one was hurt after an oven malfunctioned and caused a fire inside one of the labs at Amherst College’s Science Center Friday evening.

The college’s spokeswoman Caroline Hanna described the fire at the Science Center as small and was quickly put out by the building’s sprinkler system.

Amherst Fire Chief Tim Nelson told 22News firefighters and police were alerted after alarms activated at the Science Center located at 25 East Drive shortly after 7 p.m.

There were no injuries and property damage was minimized. The fire started when a piece of equipment in one of the biology labs on the third floor overheated. The lab sustained some smoke damage, and there is some water damage in the spaces below the lab. No other portion of the building was affected.

Caroline Hanna, Amherst College spokeswoman

The Science Center was unoccupied at the time. Chief Nelson explained that the building’s sprinkler system kept the fire from spreading throughout the rest of the building.

The building will be cleaned and systems will be restored before opening on Saturday, Hanna told 22News.

All off-duty Amherst firefighters were called in to assist as well as officials from the Hadley Fire Department and ambulance services from Belchertown, Northampton, and South County.

The South Hadley Fire Department covered the Amherst fire station while crews assisted with the fire at the Science Center.

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