TODAY'S PAPER
47° Good Afternoon
47° Good Afternoon
Long IslandNassau

Fire at Hebrew Academy in Lawrence was electrical, police say

The early childhood, elementary school and middle school campuses will be closed Thursday. Inspectors must finish up before the academy can fully reopen.

An accidental electrical fire early Thursday damaged the

An accidental electrical fire early Thursday damaged the Hebrew Academy. Photo Credit: Jim Staubitser

An accidental electrical fire in a computer room that also damaged a classroom at the Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns & Rockaway in Lawrence early Thursday forced the school to partly close, at least for the day, police and school officials said.

There were no injuries, a Nassau County police spokesman said.

The lower school building at 33 Washington Ave. was empty when the fire was reported at 3:15 a.m., the spokesman said. The Lawrence-Cedarhurst Fire Department responded and extinguished the fire.

The executive director of the private Orthodox academy, which educates pupils from pre-K through grade 12, was not available.

"Our investigation has concluded; the fire is determined to be not suspicious," Assistant Chief Fire Marshal Michael Uttaro said by telephone. "It was an accidental fire involving electrical power strips in the computer server room."

That room was heavily damaged; the fire also caused moderate to heavy damage to an adjacent classroom, he said.

"It had the potential to spread but the fire department did a great job," Uttaro said.

The academy's statement, posted on Twitter and Facebook, said: "Due to an unfortunate fire at the lower school campus, the early childhood, elementary school and middle school campuses will be closed today."

Uttaro said inspectors must finish their work before the academy can fully reopen.

"Once our guys have ensured the alarm and sprinkler systems have been fully restored they should be able to fully reoccupy" the school, he said.

In its statement, the academy promised to regularly update the community, saying the fire department was assessing the damage.

Police reopened Washington Avenue in both directions at Central Avenue at about 7:40 a.m. after closing it due to the fire at about 3:30 a.m. 

"Thank G-d everyone is safe," the academy said.

Comments

We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

Latest Long Island News