A fire early Friday morning on the 8th floor of Koonce Hall, a high-rise residence hall at Kent State University, is being labeled suspicious in nature, according to authorities.
No one was injured in the incident, which caused the evacuation of the residence hall and brought eight fire departments in response. KSU police and KSU Fire Safety officials are investigating, according to the Kent Fire Department.
Kent Fire Chief Dave Manthey said the call for an "active fire" came in at 2:27 a.m. The first crews arrived as the building was being evacuated, he said.
"Our crews made their way up to the eighth floor, the fire floor. Although the fire was pretty quickly extinguished, the whole eighth floor was pretty well filled with thick smoke," he said.
The fire, which caused damage to a wall, was under control within 20 minutes, Manthey said. Firefighters ventilated the building, pumped in clean air and cleared the scene just before 4 a.m. Residents were allowed back in about the same time, according to Kentwired.com, the student media website.
Firefighters from the Aurora, Brimfield, Mantua/Shalersville, Ravenna city, Ravenna Township, Rootstown, Stow and Streetsboro fire departments responded to the incident, Manthey said. Suffield and Tallmadge paramedics also assisted by handling "a bunch" of emergency medical calls that came in while Kent firefighters were busy on campus, he said.
Koonce Hall, off Leebrick Drive, is one of the Tri-Towers residence halls. It houses approximately 500 male and female students and is 10 stories tall.
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