Just two weeks after a fire at the University of Wisconsin Memorial Union, a second fire triggered a response from Madison firefighters.
The second fire occurred Saturday at 2:47 p.m., Madison Fire Department spokesperson Bernadette Galvez said.
Galvez said burnt popcorn in the Rathskeller bar caused flames and heavy smoke, according to staff. The power button on the popcorn machine appeared to not work.
An MFD statement said no alarms went off, despite flames and smoke.
Galvez said the general manager extinguished the fire before MFD came in and unplugged the machine.
UW Police were on the scene when an alarm sounded, Galvez said. No one in the building was evacuated, but staff met MFD in the hallway.
“Windows were opened and fans were turned on to clear the smoke out,” Galvez said.
In an email to The Badger Herald, Memorial Union spokesperson Marc Kennedy said the fire was indeed a very small fire, which staff quickly extinguished.
Kennedy added staff is looking into whether the machine should be replaced or repaired.
“Of course we take any fire, even a small one, seriously, and if necessary we’ll see if we need to follow up with further training protocols to ensure the equipment is running appropriately,” he said.
The previous fire took place two weeks ago on Oct. 8 and was deemed construction related, according to MFD.
Ald. Scott Resnick, District 8, said the room in which the fire started was previously being gutted. He said a torch tool was being used and consequently ignited wax paper.
Resnick said one firefighter was admitted to the hospital for heat-related injuries that were not life threatening. No other injuries were reported. The fire caused minor damages to surrounding surfaces.
In regard to the fire two weeks ago, Galvez stressed that the fires were two different situations and entirely unrelated.