December 14, 2006

Frozen Sprinkler Head Causes Scare at Hospital

A frozen sprinkler head was the culprit behind some tense moments at Scotland County Memorial Hospital on Friday, December 8th.

The fire protection device, located near the entrance to the new women’s center at SCMH, apparently had frozen and ultimately released at approximately 2:00 p.m., pumping water throughout the vestibule and entrance way to the center and also triggering the facility’s fire alarms.

At the same time, the odor of what was believed to be natural gas, was reported in the same area, causing maintenance crews at the hospital to notify the Scotland County Fire Department of a possible gas leak and to begin the evacuation of the hospital.

Emergency workers responded to the scene and assisted the hospital staff in determining the cause of the accident. The odor was believed to have come from the stagnant water that had been in the sprinkler line since the units had initially been charged earlier this year.

Fire and law enforcement officers were on the scene for approximately 15 minutes before the evacuation was canceled and the hospital returned to normal.

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