Sprinklers praised after two Strip fires

Two fires within 12 hours at separate hotel resorts on the Strip have local fire officials hailing the sprinkler systems that snuffed out flames before serious damage occurred.

“The hotels on the Las Vegas Strip are some of the safest places to stay,” said Clark County Fire Department spokesman Scott Allison.

Several people evacuated the Bellagio at about 5:50 a.m. Tuesday morning. One man was treated for burns to his lower arms when the mattress in his 26th-floor hotel room caught fire, possibly from a lit cigarette, Allison said.

A separate blaze on the 14th floor of the Venetian occurred at about 9:50 p.m. Monday in a mechanical room. Firefighters are unsure what sparked the fire but believe it started near a pile of large air filters.

No injuries were reported and no one was evacuated.

After the Bellagio blaze, the man in the room, who told authorities he wasn’t smoking, was taken to University Medical Center for minor burns and smoke inhalation. Another person was taken to a local hospital for smoke inhalation and a few others were treated on-site for the same cause, Allison said.

The flames were contained to the bed and doused by the sprinkler system. Guests on the 26th floor voluntarily evacuated to a ballroom in the hotel resort, Allison said.

Although a damage amount hasn’t been calculated, guests in about 45 rooms were relocated due to some smoke and water damage, Allison said.

Representatives of the resorts could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

In a 1980 fire at the former MGM Grand, now the site of Bally’s, 87 people died and more than 600 were injured. The blaze was caused by an electrical fault. The fire prompted new rules for sprinkler systems and alarms in high-rises.

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