Art Room Fire Prompts Evacuation at Wayzata High School
An art room fire summoned fire trucks from around the region and forced an evacuation of Wayzata High School. Students waited outside of the building and in the football stadium while fire trucks from as far away as Loretto and Richfield responded to the call.
“Everybody thought it was a senior prank until we saw a fire truck move in,” says student Ricky Garcia.
Some students were closer to the actual fire and knew the fire alarm was real.
“I was late to class and walked by the lunchroom and said, ‘yo something’s burning,'” says Owen Benjamin, who had class in the music production room. “The pottery kiln was really close to the music production room. Everybody had to go out and had to go to the bleachers. When we were in the bleachers, we saw four fire trucks, then six and eight. Now there’s 13.”
Cause of Wayzata Art Room Fire Under Investigation
School spokesperson Jeffrey DeMars says around 10:45 Friday morning, an assistant principal at Wayzata High School noticed something wasn’t right with the kiln in the art room and called 911.
“It was the kiln in the art room and obviously those burn hot already,” says DeMars. “There was smoke, people smelled it and there was a fire. An evacuation took place, not limited to that room but an entire evacuation of the school.”
DeMars says the fire was contained to the art room, but there could be additional smoke damage. Staff corralled students into the football stadium while firefighters worked.
“Once we had [students] in a place where they wouldn’t be harmed, once we realized there were no injures and once we realized the fire was contained, it was a question of do we go back in? Or do we go home?” says DeMars.
The school district made the decision to dismiss school early and school buses were able to pick up students early.
The cause of the fire is under investigation and there’s also no word on the cost of damage to the school. Class will resume Tuesday. Evening activities, which include a sold-out play, will proceed as planned.