The Cable

Fire at State Department day care building

A fire hit the State Department building that houses the day care center early Tuesday morning, but no injuries were reported.

"A fire early this morning in SA-1 (State Annex 1) Low Rise has caused significant water damage to the 5th floor and below," read a notice from the office of emergency management. "The entire Low Rise is closed today, including the child care center. The Hi Rise should be open at 9:00 AM today. Underground parking will be available at that time."

A State Department official told The Cable that the cause of the fire appeared to be electrical, and the sprinkler system extinguished it. The investigation and damage assessment is ongoing, and there's a lot of water from the sprinklers all over the building.

Federal News Radio reported that the fire was extinguished by 7:30 AM, and it was not clear if anyone was inside the building at the time. The building is part of the Columbia Plaza complex, adjacent to the campus of the George Washington University.

The Low Rise may be opened up for a short period of time later today so employees can retrieve personal items, the OEM notice said. But the day care center will remain closed.

"Among other things, the (SA-1) Low Rise houses Diplo-tots, our day care center for employee kids, so we have some little visitors at Main State today unexpectedly helping out moms and dads," the State Department official said.

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