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Mattress fire forces 200 to evacuate downtown Calgary homeless shelter

Crews responded to a downtown Calgary building fire that evacuated 200, displaced some and injured none on Tuesday.
Crews responded to a downtown Calgary building fire that evacuated 200, displaced some and injured none on Tuesday. Global News

Two hundred people were cleared out of a downtown Calgary homeless shelter after a mattress caught fire on Tuesday.

Crews responded to a triggered alarm system in the Salvation Army’s Centre of Hope, located in the 400 block of 9 Avenue S.E., at around 3:30 p.m., according to the Calgary Fire Department (CFD).

A mattress in a third-floor room caught fire and activated the sprinklers, the CFD said.

“The sprinkler successfully contained the fire to that unit until fire crews could get on scene and finish extinguishing it,” said Carol Henke, the CFD’s public information officer.

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After firefighters ventilated the building and ensured the air quality was safe, staff and residents were allowed back inside just before 6 p.m., the department said.

Several residents were displaced due to fire and water damage and will be allowed back in their suites after they are cleaned, officials said.

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It is unknown if the resident of the unit was inside at the time the fire started.

The fire’s origin and cause are under investigation.