D.C. Fire and EMS spokesperson Pete Piringer says that two Georgetown University maintenance workers caught in campus blaze on Thursday morning aren’t as badly injured as previously thought.
The two workers were removing carpet and glue from a floor in a building called New North, using lacquer thinner. Moments later, they plugged in a floor stripping machine—and things went kaboom. The machine evidently ignited the cloud of chemical vapors that had collected in the room. The resulting blaze, which occurred at about 2:45 a.m, burned both workers.
Piringer emails: “Initially the injuries were thought to be serious, with possible respiratory involvement, but it is no[w] expected that they will be treated and released, possibly today or tomorrow. Both were treated for minor burns to the face, hands and arms.”
Officials prevously suspected the men might have severe burns and respiratory damage.
Piringer says the blaze was put out by a sprinkler system. He estimates that the building sustained about $40,000 worth of damage.