Facilities update by John Greenauer
The church fire alarm system monitored by our security service detected smoke in the area of the Sactuary about 2:45 am on Wednesday, May 25, 2016. Ken Rowe, moderator was notified and immediately went to the church. When Ken arrived the fire department as already present and attempting to enter the building.
Fire District Six personnel bravely fought the fire which quickly reached three alarm status. Additional high lift equipment was loaned by the Bonneville Power Authority to reach the highest portion of the roof near the steeple. The fire was extinguished late morning. An investigation of the suspicious natur of the fire was conducted by the Clark County Fire Marhsal and the federal ATF. A determination of arson and a reward for information was subsequently announced in the media.
Damage to the church is extensive and includes structural damage, smoke, water and asbestos contamination. The Sanctuary is the most heavily damaged area with structural damage to the roof, skylight and walls resulting in opening to the outside. Additionally, there is heavy smoke, water and concentrated asbestos contamination to the Sanctuary and Narthex and contents. Bradford Hall received much of the water and smoke from above and also contains asbestos.
The electrical room located below the fire area received extensive water damage and power to the building was turned off at the street.
Areas of the first floor outside Bradford Hall received large quantities of water and smoke. Areas of the first and second floor further from the Sanctuary have smoke damage.
Our insurance agent was notified and arrived at the church within hours. She reviewed our coverage and notified the company which is owned by the Insurance Board. We are well insured for the loss and temporary expenses of operation and recovery we face.
our insurance company maintains contracts with Belfor Property Restoration and a representative arrived by mid morning and began the process of securing and protecting the building and contents. By late afternoon and continuing past dark they worked to secure the site. Work continued on the following days to determine the extent of structural damage with an engineering evaluation and report, retrieve contents, test the asbestos levels and extent, dry up the water, reduce the smoke and plan for recovery.
Council med on Wednesday, May 25 with the Property and Finance Ministry and again on Thursday, May 26. Plans for the secession of officers and ministries and committees are proceeding as scheduled on June 1.