The Days Inn on West Bel Air Avenue in Aberdeen was condemned by county and city inspectors Wednesday after a morning fire revealed “serious and multiple” fire, building and electrical violations, the state fire marshal’s office said.
The fire was discovered by a passerby at around 9:30 a.m. Wednesday in Room 312 of the two-story hotel, located on the 700 block of West Bel Air Avenue. The blaze was traced to an accidental electrical malfunction in the power cord of a nightstand lamp in the unoccupied room, and spread through an electrical outlet to the adjacent Room 311, igniting a bed covering and mattress.
A total of 30 firefighters from the Aberdeen, APG, and Level fire companies contained the fire to the two rooms, and brought it under control in about five minutes. Damage to the structure was estimated at $40,000, while damages to its contents were estimated at $10,000.
Smoke and fire alarms were present at the time of the fire but did not activate. A sprinkler system was not present as it was not required at the time of the blaze, fire officials said.
However, a “routine inspection” of the hotel following the blaze found “serious and multiple fire, building and electrical violations,” according to a statement released by the state fire marshal’s office. The hotel had “numerous electrical violations” and at least 20 rooms did not have working smoke alarms, according to Bob Thomas, spokesman for Harford County Executive David Craig.
The building was subsequently condemned by Aberdeen and Harford County code enforcement authorities. Thomas said the building cannot be reoccupied without approval from the state fire marshal and county building officials.