Fire sprinkler system saves Downtown apartment building

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Firefighters from Charleston and North Charleston were called out to a fire Wednesday evening at an apartment building on Rutledge Avenue in Downtown Charleston.

Fire officials say it happened around 5:51 p.m. when a tenant in the building reported smoke on the second floor.

When crews arrived on the scene, they found a small fire in one of the apartments that was contained by a two head sprinkler system in the building. Officials say the fire and water damage was limited as firefighters quickly deactivated the sprinkler system as soon as the situation was under control.

According to officials, crews used less than five gallons of water to extinguish the remaining fire due to the effectiveness of the fire sprinkler system.

"Fire sprinklers are an invaluable tool to improve life safety and have the potential to reduce property damage," said Fire Marshal Mike Julazadeh. "Two fire sprinklers activated and controlled the fire until the fire department arrived. These systems are designed to control the fire or reduce the growth of the fire until the fire department can intervene. The sprinkler system in this case preserved the building and limited damages. One tenant will likely be displaced while minor damages are repaired. The fire sprinkler system was restored and seven additional tenants returned to their apartments this evening."

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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