March 12, 2013
UPDATE: Evans Elementary School will remain closed Wednesday to allow for cleanup efforts, according to a statement late Tuesday afternoon from District 49.
An elementary school was evacuated late Tuesday morning after a small fire filled the school with smoke.
The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the blaze as arson, sheriff’s spokesman Lt. Jeff Kramer said. A lone student at the school is a suspect, he said.
Cimarron Hills firefighters received a call at 10:29 a.m. on an automatic fire alarm at Evans Elementary School, in Falcon School District 49. The blaze was upgraded to a structure fire after receiving 911 calls, said Fire Chief Matt Love.
An engine from Peterson Air Force Base and three Cimarron Hills units arrived in about two minutes, he said.
Smoke had quickly filled the school at 1675 Winnebago Road, and fire crews and school staff evacuated students. More than 700 children, including those in preschool, attend the school.
Students are being supervised at Sand Creek High School where parents or guardians with proper identification may pick them up, said Dustin Senger, D-49 digital communications specialist.
"D-49 did an excellent job transporting the kids to Sand Creek away from the smoke and out of the cold," Love said.
The relatively small fire was extinguished within minutes, he said, and damage was contained to a boys' bathroom in the north wing.
Love said the fire would be investigated.