- Associated Press - Thursday, December 3, 2015

WAKEFIELD, R.I. (AP) - Officials say a malfunctioning water heater in the cafeteria of Monsignor Matthew F. Clarke School in Wakefield was the reason behind the school’s sudden evacuation.

The Providence Journal reports (http://bit.ly/1l90bIz ) the Catholic coeducational elementary and middle school was evacuated Wednesday after the water heater caused a loud boom and black smoke billowed into the cafeteria around 12:15 p.m.

A letter from Principal John Finnegan and Assistant Principal John Connell said “grades PreK-2 were in the cafeteria in lunch at the time, grades 3-5 were at recess and grades 6-8 were in their homerooms.”

First responders included members of the Union Fire District, South Kingstown Police and EMS personnel.

The letter stated that the building was inspected and ultimately deemed safe. The faulty boiler will be repaired.

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Information from: The Providence Journal, http://www.providencejournal.com

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