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Maryland State Fire Marshal

News Release Martin O’Malley Governor

William E. Barnard State Fire Marshal


LEXINGTON PARK, MARYLAND (December 13, 2010) – Deputy State Fire Marshals have determined the cause for an apartment fire at the Spring Valley Apartments complex last night was accidental. A new occupant was moving into the second floor apartment and placed combustible items on and near the stove surface. The items caught on fire and activated the fire sprinkler system and kept the fire damage to the kitchen area. The 9:13 p.m. fire at 46528 Valley Court in Lexington Park, St. Mary’s County was contained to the area of the stove and due to the quick reaction of the fire sprinkler system the damage estimates were limited to $8,000. The fire brought approximately thirty-five firefighters from Bay District, Patuxent River and Hollywood fire departments to the scene. No reports of injury were reported during the incident. The first floor apartment experienced water damage which displaced the occupants temporarily during the following cleanup efforts. In the absence of residential fire sprinklers the outcome may very well have been more damaging with more fire damage prior to the fire departments arrival. “This is yet another example of the effectiveness of automatic sprinklers in residential occupancies. Residential fire sprinklers save lives and property. Presence of fire sprinklers undoubtedly prevented a more tragic outcome,” stated State Fire Marshal William E. Barnard.

Media contact: Bruce D. Bouch, Deputy State Fire Marshal; 443-324-6876

1201 Reisterstown Road, Pikesville, MD 21208

2010-12-13 St.Mary's Apartment Fire Valley Court