arson suspected in fire at Quads

By Gus Bode

Police are investigating a suspected arson that occurred Wednesday morning in one of the Quadrangle Apartments at 1207 S. Wall St.

Officials reported no one was harmed during the incident, which took place on the third floor of the second building of the Quads. The majority of residents had already evacuated the building when firemen arrived after receiving a call at approximately 9:50 a.m.

Police, as well as the Carbondale Fire Department, said they would continue to investigate the cause of the fire as suspected arson. Captain Ted Lomax said more information concerning the fire would be available in the next few days.

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Property Manager Lori Rafael said there was damage to only one apartment in the building, in which the fire originated. Rafael said relocation would only be necessary for the tenant of this apartment, but said that ample space did exist if further relocation had been necessary.

Rafael said she was satisfied by the response of workers at the complex who helped to evacuate the building, as well as the quick response of the Fire Department. She said she was still waiting for further investigation to reveal the cause of the fire.

Lomax confirmed that the building had been evacuated prior to the arrival of the fire department, and there was no visible panic from the few tenants present at the time of the fire.

“I heard the fire alarms go off but I thought it was another false alarm,” said Shana Hunt, a freshman in radio and television, who stayed in the same apartment building on the second floor during in the previous semester. ” There have been a lot of false alarms since I’ve lived here, two or three that I can remember.”

Resident Sharon Harpot spent the time outside with fellow tenant Ryan Hunt, who said he initially thought the sound of fire alarms to be his alarm clock. Due to the number of false alarms prior to Wednesday’s fire, both Hunt and Harpot assumed a false alarm.

“I usually go outside because you never know if it’s an actual fire or a false alarm,” said Harpot, a senior in psychology from Glenview. “I went into the hallway and all you could smell was this smell of burning plastic.

“I’ve lived here for three years and this is the first real fire I’ve seen.”

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