On Thursday, McGee Middle School students were evacuated for almost an hour when a squirrel caused a small fire in a boiler room at the school. On Friday, a teacher noticed a gas smell in the school. A custodian also smelled gas and as a precaution Berlin Fire Department was called and the students were evacuated Friday afternoon.
The students were outside for about 20 minutes to a half hour before returning to school.
"One of the teachers smelled gas and asked a custodian to see if he smelled the same thing," McGee Principal Dr. Scott Ratchford said. "He smelled the same odor and to be safe rather than sorry we called the Fire Department who came in with their equipment. They came in and detected no gas so we were given the all-clear and the students returned back to class."
Ratchford said the fire officials gave him what they thought might have been the cause.
"They think the boilers kicked on at the same time when one of the roof unit intakes came on," Ratchford said. "That gave us a puff of fuel smell that may have smelled like gas.
"Obviously this is not the two days we would have wanted the last two days but like I said I would rather be safe than sorry when it comes to our students' safety."