CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — The cause of a small fire at Capital High School on Friday that damaged their new gym floor has been deemed accidental.
Charleston Fire Department Capt. David Hodges told 13 News that the fire was caused by a “spontaneous combustion of oily rags.” A banner was then caught on fire and the sprinkler system helped put it out.
No one was injured in the fire, but it damaged their new gym floor, the school’s basketball posted on X, formerly known as Twitter.
According to the school’s basketball team, the new floor was put in after the old one was in use for 34 years. Briana Warner, Communications Director for Kanawha County Schools, said the gym floor was built over the course of six weeks and cost $233,880.
The fire – which happened in the back hallway of the gym – caused the sprinklers to go off, which did not turn off after the fire was put out. This caused the gym floor to flood. The team said they are “back to square one.”
While there is no visible damage, Warner said there is around two inches of water under the floor that is drying out. She said they are worried about the floor warping.
Warner told 13 News that the contractor has turned a report on the damage over to their insurance and it will take “a couple of weeks” to hear back and to assess the damage.
13 News will be talking to the principal of Capital High School, Mr. Bailey, and will view the gym floor Wednesday afternoon. We will continue to update you as we receive more information.