Faulty lamp cord blamed for PU fire

March 8, 1994

The Princeton Packet

Faulty lamp cord blamed for PU fire

Investigators believe a faulty lamp cord was responsible for a fire that severely damaged several rooms inside a Princeton University dormitory early Saturday morning.

Students had moved furniture around in a common room in Blair Hall in preparation for a party, Princeton Borough police said. One of the students returned from taking a shower at 12:30 a.m. to find smoke wafting out of the room.

“As he was dialing 911, the smoke alarms went off,” said university spokeswoman Jacquie Savani on Monday.

Between 50 to 60 students were evacuated while members of the Princeton Fire Department extinguished the fire.

“The fire was out by 1:15 a.m.,” police Capt. Peter Hanley said.

“The common room was severely damaged,” the captain said. “Speakers and a stereo system melted, and the couch and the rug were badly burned. The two bedrooms were damaged by smoke and water.”

No injuries were reported, Capt. Hanley said.

Fire investigators believe the blaze was started by a faulty electrical cord.

“There’s no negligence here. This is associated with a faulty piece of equipment,” Ms. Savani said.

In the past 15 months, there have been four other fires in student dormitories, including one last year in Blair Hall.

“The other fires were associated with cigaratte smoking,” Ms. Savani said. “There’s nothing like that here in this case.”

– John P. McAlpin

Leave a Reply