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PLENTY OF SMOKE BUT NO FIRE AT S.L. TRI-ARC

SHARE PLENTY OF SMOKE BUT NO FIRE AT S.L. TRI-ARC

Billowing smoke in a downtown Salt Lake hotel forced the evacuation of all 12 of its floors Monday morning, but firefighters said no injuries resulted.

Fire crews were leaving the Tri-Arc Hotel and about 50 guests were returning to their rooms by 8:45 a.m. MST, authorities said.Smoke began pouring from electrical appliances on the sixth, seventh and ninth floors at 7:40 a.m., shortly after the Tri-Arc began switching power from Utah Power & Light Co. to its own source, said Gordon Nicholl, a battalion chief with the Salt Lake City Fire Department.

Although there never was a fire, "anytime we get smoke in a hotel, we're concerned," Nicholl said.

David Kirby, an Amtrak employee from Seattle, was on the fifth floor when a fire alarm sounded.

"We'd just gotten in at 6 a.m. I heard an alarm but didn't pay any attention to it," he said. "Alarms are always going off in hotels.

"But when I heard the trucks, that's when I got dressed," said Kirby, who stays at the Tri-Arc as part of his weekly Monday layover.

Nicholl said a man was trapped in an elevator near the seventh floor when power failed at the Tri-Arc but was freed within an hour.