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Incinerator Fire at Texas Hospital

April 19, 2002

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GALVESTON, Texas (AP) _ An incinerator at a University of Texas Medical Branch campus caught fire and its smokestack partially collapsed Thursday, prompting the evacuation of a nearby prison hospital.

The blaze was quickly contained and more than 200 prisoners were moved to other facilities, said Larry Todd, spokesman for the Department of Criminal Justice. There were no serious injuries, but three correctional officers were treated for smoke inhalation.

The collapse happened during demolition in the area but authorities did not know what caused the blaze.

``We have no way to determine the origin of the fire,″ Todd said. ``We do know that the incinerator was extremely hot.″

UTMB spokesman Pep Valdes said patient care at the six hospitals on the university campus was not jeopardized.

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