Bel Air hospital parking garage, offices evacuated after vehicle fire

People were briefly evacuated from a multi-level parking garage and medical offices at the University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Medical Center campus in Bel Air Wednesday morning after a vehicle in the garage caught fire.

Members of the Bel Air Volunteer Fire Company were alerted at 8:49 a.m., Rich Gardiner, spokesman for the Harford County Volunteer Fire and EMS Association, said via text message Wednesday.

Firefighters and Bel Air police officers responded to the Pavilion II garage along Upper Chesapeake Drive, where a Toyota Sienna minivan was on fire.

People who were in the 11 office suites in the top levels of the garage, as well as those in the parking levels, were evacuated from the garage, according to Amy Myers, safety manager for the Bel Air medical center and Harford Memorial Hospital in Havre de Grace, which is part of Upper Chesapeake Health.

Upper Chesapeake Health is part of the University of Maryland Medical System.

"As soon as the fire department came and saw it, they disconnected the [vehicle] battery," Myers said late Wednesday morning.

She said everyone was able to return to the garage after about 10 minutes, and "normal operations" resumed.

The garage was operating normally around 9:30 a.m. Wednesday; the Sienna remained in the garage, its rear blocked by two orange traffic markers.

The minivan did not appear to be seriously damaged, although part of the rear bumper was cracked and melted, and wires hung down from it.

Myers said the owner of the vehicle had been contacted, and it would need to be towed.

She said no one was injured, and there was no damage to surrounding vehicles or the garage.

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