A new blower for a rooftop air conditioning unit malfunctioned, filling a computer lab at Youngsville High School with black smoke at approximately 1 p.m. Wednesday.
YHS Assistant Principal Mary Ann Mead said a student, who is also a member of the Youngsville Volunteer Fire Department, reported smoke in room 218. She said the smoke was coming out of a vent in the room.
Administration immediately reported the incident to 911 and evacuated YHS students as well as Head Start students.
She said administration “can’t take a chance on not knowing where it is.”
Principal Phil Knapp said that the smoke smelled like an electrical fire. Of making the call, “it was just not knowing,” he said.
Boyd Freeborough, the Warren County School District’s quality assurance supervisor, said that the district was installing a new blower for a rooftop air conditioning unit, explaining that when they started the blower, it began to smoke.
He said the “response was great” and noted that members of the Youngsville Volunteer Fire Department were using fans to air out the room. He said there was never any flame present during the incident.
Director of Administrative Support Services Amy Stewart said the response was good as well and said that the “all-clear” was given at approximately 1:20 p.m. She said students were outside for 20 to 25 minutes during the investigation.
Mead added that the students and staff handled their response to the incident well.
According to the Warren County Public Safety Facebook page, a post from 1:10 p.m. announced the evacuation and said that no injuries were reported. The page reported the incident as closed at 1:33 after being checked “by the Fire Department and School Officials.”