Winthrop University fire under investigation

While the fire is now out at Winthrop University’s Owens Hall, the investigation continues. Rock Hill firefighters extinguished the flames around 3 o’clock Sunday afternoon nearly 24 hours after the initial blaze. Winthrop officials have canceled classes today as fire investigators begin their investigation into what caused the fire to break out on the two-year-old classroom building.
Winthrop president Tony DiGiorgio said that anyone who has been by the campus will be able to see the damage. “If you’ve been by the campus at all you will see that they’ve hacked up the roof. The roof is just kind of an open sore at the moment. The firefighters expect to leave the scene on Monday, then investigators will control the site for a limited time to try to find what the cause of the fire was,” he said.
School officials said classes usually scheduled for Owens Hall, as well as those located in nearby Bancroft Hall and Bancroft Annex will be relocated for the remainder of the semester. Access to the affected buildings is restricted for students, faculty and staff until the damage assessments are complete.
DiGiorgio continued to describe the damage. “You can imagine hundreds of thousands of gallons of water having been poured on the roof and have seeped through both Owen’s Hall and Bancroft Annex. Bankcroft Hall has some collateral damage and Kinard has some smoke damage and a few electrical things that need to be taken care of.”
One firefighter was injured when he fell down a stairwell inside the building. He was taken to a nearby hospital where he was treated and released.