(OOLITIC) - Cleanup crews started work at Oolitic Middle School Tuesday, after a fire Monday afternoon left the building filled with soot and smoke.
North Lawrence Community Schools Superintendent Dennis Turner and others were at the building Tuesday morning examining the scene and forming a plan of action for cleaning up the mess.
The fire was reported just after 4 p.m. Monday in the building's weight room. Several basketball players and others participating in extracurricular activities were evacuated.
No one was injured. But the fire sent dense, black smoke and soot throughout the building.
Oolitic, Marshall and Shawswick Volunteer Fire Department firefighters were called to the school just after 4 p.m. Monday.
The fire was put out quickly and an investigator from the state fire marshal's office was notified Monday night.
The investigator determined a lighting ballast malfunctioned, causing sparks that set fire to a rubber bench on a weight machine. As the hot rubber melted, it caught the rubber floor on fire.
Turner has reported the fire to the school system's insurance carrier.
Turner says custodians were at the school early Tuesday to start the cleanup and the a private company that specializes in post-emergency cleanup was hired so classes can resume on Monday.
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