Smoking laptop prompts Ferdinand Elementary evacuation

Quick action by a Ferdinand Elementary staff member mitigated any possible damages to the elementary school when a recently repaired laptop overheated.

The Ferdinand Volunteer Fire Department responded to the school at 11:54 a.m. after an automated alarm in the server room housing the computers was activated by the smoking Samsung Chromebook.

The laptop had just been repaired and was waiting to be tested before being returned to service. According to authorities, the Chromebook’s lithium battery malfunctioned causing it to overheat, melting the laptop and causing it to smoke. Fortunately, it was in a box next to technology specialist Tami Hochgesang’s desk and she was able to pick it up with the other computers stacked there to take it outside the school.

However, the smoke detector in the server room triggered the fire alarm and the students were evacuated.

Responding firefighters ventilated the room but no other damages were reported. Sixteen firefighters were on scene for about 35 minutes.


The Ferdinand Police Department assisted.

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