TWIN FALLS — More than 20 automatic fire alarms were triggered across Twin Falls Thursday morning after a surge in the city’s water system.
Alarms in Walmart, the College of Southern Idaho, St. Luke’s Magic Valley Clinic and other businesses and institutions in the northern part of the city were tripped at the same time, causing mass evacuations.
The alarms were triggered because of a fluctuation in water pressure, said city spokesman Josh Palmer. The fluctuation happened while the city was reprogramming a communications system as part of planned upgrades to the Twin Falls water system. Some fire suppression systems, Palmer said, are designed to trigger an alarm when they detect a change in water pressure.
The Twin Falls Fire Department was dispatched to the buildings where alarms were triggered.
“It’s not typically a fire problem when it happens all at once,” said Twin Falls Fire Chief Les Kenworthy. “But we still need to go out and check those and make sure they’re not fires.”
Other businesses and institutions affected included Sportsman’s Warehouse, Canyon Ridge High School, Bed Bath and Beyond, the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints temple, Bridgeview Estates, Winco, La Quinta, Gold’s Gym and the Shilo Inn.