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Posted at 10:03 AM ET, 08/18/2011

Residents return to Silver Spring highrise after fire

Residents in a Silver Spring highrise were allowed back in their apartments early Thursday morning after a fire erupted in the boiler room overnight.

Most of the power was restored to the 20-story building by about 6 a.m.

About 78 people residents spent the night in a temporary shelter at Springbrook High School. The remainder of the 1,500 residents found somewhere else to stay or returned to their apartments after midnight with the understanding they would not have electricity and some would not have water.

The flames started at about 8:30 p.m. in the 11700 block of Old Columbia Pike when smoke from an electrical fire forced officials to evacuate residents.

About 50 Montgomery County firefighters fought the fire. No apartments were damaged, said Captain Oscar Garcia, a fire department spokesman. At least two electrical panels were damaged, so authorities cut power to the whole building, he said.

One person was taken to the hospital with minor injuries, Garcia said.

This report has been updated.

By and  |  10:03 AM ET, 08/18/2011

Categories:  Fires & Fire Safety, Allison Klein, Clarence Williams, Montgomery

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