By Jannise Johnson
The San Bernardino County Sun
NEEDLES, Calif. — A fire damaged a hotel in Needles on Wednesday morning, with some dysfunctional hydrants hampering firefighters.
San Bernardino County firefighters responded at 7:26 a.m. to the Days Inn & Suites in the 1200 block of Hospitality Lane after getting calls about smoke coming from the hotel, according to a fire news release.
Firefighters saw flames coming from the lobby area of the hotel and the guests were being evacuated, according to the release.
Firefighters efforts were slowed by three fire hydrants in the area that were not working, according to the release.
Tracey Martinez, public information officer for the county department, said fire engines carry 70 gallons of water. Fire department officials then called in water tenders — normally used in brush fires — to provide firefighting capability, Martinez said.
Fire personnel kept the blaze from spreading to the second floor and the adjacent rooms, according to the release.
The fire was kept to the lobby and several rooms attached to the manager's residence. Hotel patrons from 20 rooms were evacuated safely, according to the release.
Structure and property damage was estimated to be in the thousands. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Hotel smoke alarms were working and activated properly.
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