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West Wing evacuated: Smoke from a transformer prompts action

West Wing evacuated: An electrical transformer in the West Wing started smoking Saturday morning, triggering an alarm. President Barack Obama and his family were not affected by the overheated equipment or the West Wing evacuation.

By Associated Press / May 11, 2013

District of Columbia Fire department trucks and personnel are seen parked between the The Eisenhower Executive Office Building and the West Wing as they respond to a call at the White House, Saturday, May 11, 2013, in Washington.

(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)



Reporters and photographers were evacuated briefly from the West Wing of the White House early Saturday because of smoke from an overheated transformer in a mechanical room.

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President Barack Obama and his family were not affected by the incident, according to the White House.

U.S. Secret Service spokesman Max Milien said that at about 7 a.m., smoke was seen coming from a mechanical room closet on the first floor.

Journalists and others were evacuated out of "an abundance of caution" and the District of Columbia fire department was called, he said.

People were allowed back into the building about an hour later.

No injuries were reported.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.


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