Fire at Smiths employee housing unit could have been much worse, sprinkler worked

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – An early morning fire at the Smith’s Plaza was doused by an operational sprinkler system.

Jackson Hole Fire/EMS was called to a structure fire in the apartments above the Smiths Liquor Store this morning at 8:40am. By the time they arrived, crews found that a sprinkler had completely extinguished a grease fire from an unattended cooking pan. The pan’s grease flamed up to the overhead kitchen hood and was suppressed when the sprinkler head became hot enough to trigger water onto the fire and quickly put it out.

Fire crews placed a stopper in the sprinkler head to help control the water flow once it was determined the fire was completely out. By 2pm this afternoon, it was reported the water had been cleaned up and the sprinkler system put back into service. All 40 employees will be able to return to their rooms tonight.

Fire Marshal Kathy Clay put the event in perspective and emphasized the importance of a fully functional sprinkler system.

“One fire sprinkler put out a fire that could have burned the entire building down,” Clay noted. “This single fire sprinkler kept the fire spread from going into the attic space. Housing is a significant issue in this valley, and today we can celebrate that this life safety fire sprinkler system functioned when needed, saved lives, and saved property.”

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