Avalon Bay Residents Evacuate After Fire Sprinklers Mysteriously Activate

Four sprinkler heads in the ground level parking structure of Avalon Bay activated Saturday night, flooding the lower level. Photo courtesy of Ryan Foran.

Four sprinkler heads possibly malfunctioned Saturday night, causing residents to self evacuate at the Avalon Bay apartment complex.

Firefighters and Glendora Police officers were dispatched just before midnight April 30 to the 280-unit apartment complex, 121 E. Route 66. Rushing water from the sprinklers flooded the ground level parking garage and activated the fire alarms. No fire was reported.

“The fire department wasn’t able to determine what happened,” said Sgt. Marty Barrett of Glendora Police. “Four sprinkler heads came off the fire system, we don’t know if it was tampered with, faulty or a problem with the system.”

Firefighters eventually worked to shut off the sprinklers and reset the fire alarm, said Sgt. Shelley Gold.

“There was no indication there was vandalism so we took no report. We assisted and made sure everyone was OK.”

Resident Ryan Foran left his Avalon Bay apartment a few minutes before midnight to shop at Albtersons . After a few minutes of shopping, he returned to find firefighters outside the apartment complex.

“There didn’t appear to be a fire, something just set the sprinklers in the parking garage off. They kept the parking garage closed off for awhile, but once the complex was deemed safe … they allowed everyone back in,” Foran said.

After roughly 15 or 20 minutes, residents were allowed back in to their apartments.