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No injuries reported
Fire damages assisted-living center for Columbus Dominicans

COLUMBUS, OH February 15, 2008--- A fire on the roof forced the evacuation of Mohun Health Care Center, skilled-care facility of the Dominican Sisters of St. Mary of the Springs, Friday afternoon.

The Columbus Fire Division got the call at 4:40 p.m. for the Mohun Health Care Center, 2340 Airport Dr. The 72-bed facility cares for sisters and brothers, as well as priests and deacons in the Diocese of Columbus. The facility is adjacent to the religious community St. Mary of the Springs and the Ohio Dominican University near Port Columbus.

There were no injuries. Smoke and flames were visible from 2 miles away. About 75 firefighters responded and the fire was extinguished in about 30 minutes, said Kelly McGuire, Columbus Fire Division spokeswoman.

The center was getting a new roof. The fire started near a barrel of tar and spread into an elevator area, where firefighters were able to contain it, McGuire said. The smoke activated alarms on the fourth floor. Damage was estimated at about $100,000, she said.

Sixty people inside were evacuated by Ohio Dominican students and staff members.

“The firefighters were magnificent,” said Alice Black, spokeswoman for the Dominican Sisters, St. Mary of the Springs. “They responded immediately and extinguished the fire.

“Everyone was calm,” Black said. “That's when evacuation drills pay off.”

Sister Pat Twohill said the emergency crisis plan “was followed beautifully.”

“The residents were back (in the center) for dinner.”

The center was built in the 1950s and renovated in the 1990s.


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