Illinois Club Set to Reopen after Fire

The Advocate Condell Centre Club in Libertyville, IL, will reopen Thursday after a fire in one of the club’s dryers forced an evacuation.

The Advocate Condell Centre Club in Libertyville, IL, will reopen Thursday after a fire in one of the club's dryers forced an evacuation.

The fire started shortly after 10 a.m. Tuesday and was contained inside the dryer, which contained a load of towels, manager Richard Schoeneman told Club Industry. Two employees were inside the room at the time of the fire, and one of them sent an emergency call to the front desk, which dialed 911.

Before a fire crew arrived, the club’s building engineer heard the emergency announcement, entered the room within a minute and put out the fire with a fire extinguisher, Schoeneman says. Flames did not reach the ceiling, and sprinklers were not set off in the room, which has three large gas dryers and two commercial washers with a folding area, Schoeneman says.

About 150 members and a dozen employees had to be evacuated, Schoeneman adds. Although no injuries resulted from the fire, an employee who was not feeling well was taken to the emergency room and has been released. There also was minimal damage, Schoeneman adds.

Some of the members who were evacuated were taken across the street to the Advocate Condell Medical Center and waited in the lobby. (The medical center owns and operates the club, which is on the center's campus in a separate building.) Other members headed to their vehicles, Schoeneman says. About an hour after the incident, members were able to go back inside to retrieve their personal belongings.

The club, which closed after the fire and remains closed today, will reopen at 5 a.m. Thursday.

"We probably could have opened today, but we're making sure," Schoeneman says. "The smell was my only concern, and we wanted that environment to be as positive as it normally is, so we decided to give it another day."

Advocate Condell Centre Club was ranked No. 72 on Club Industry's Top 100 Clubs list last year with a reported $9.5 million in 2011 revenue. In addition to the club in Libertyville, Advocate Condell also operates a club in Gurnee, IL.

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