Garage door opener starts small but dangerous fire at Belmont Police Station

BELMONT — It was a close call for the Police Department yesterday morning when the motor on the sally-port overhead door burned out and started a small fire.
Lt. Rich Mann said he was in his office when he smelled smoke coming from the garage area, which is toward the back of the building.
Police Officers Joel Pickowicz and Evan Boulanger took a fire extinguisher and were able to extinguish the fire, which had begun to spread to the ceiling, while the Fire Department was on the way.
Mann said the building was evacuated per department policy and a fire safety drill is reviewed and practiced annually. He said the building was evacuated temporarily after Boulanger and Pickowicz extinguished the blaze.
He said the door was open when the fire started and the department was fortunate officers noticed the fire when they did.
He said the department installed a garage door opener about three years ago when they learned the old one was unable to lift the door, which he described as very heavy.
While awaiting a replacement motor Mann said the door can be manually operated and the building is secure.

Caption: (fire at Belmont PD) The ceiling in the sally-port of the Belmont Police station charred when the motor of the overhead door became overheated and caught fire. (Laconia Daily Sun photo/Gail Ober)