No evacuations necessary

No evacuations were needed and no injuries were reported at a fire that broke out on the roof of a maintenance building on the Phelps County Regional Medical Center campus Wednesday shortly after noon.

According to Ron Smith, training officer with the City of Rolla Fire and Rescue, the fire was contained to a six-foot by six-foot area on the Energy Center’s roof within about a half hour after fire crews arrived.

No patients or everyday hospital operations were affected, Smith said, and there was no smoke in any buildings.

The cause of the fire is believed to be due to exhaust from a large generator that was running during a required four-hour test. Smith said the exhaust pipe on the roof ignited foam insulation, which was touching the exhaust pipe. The foam had become dry, Smith said.

According to the fire department, long-term exposure to high heat can cause foam to break down and become easier to ignite.

About 10 on-duty firefighters responded and were able to remove the foam without any further damage to the building, Smith said. Two aerial pumpers also were used to fight the fire.