Firefighters Locate Rooftop HVAC Unit as Source of Smoke at Joyce Kilmer School

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A firefighter at a hydrant at the front of Kilmer School at 655 Golfview Terrace in Buffalo Grove
A firefighter at a hydrant at the front of Kilmer School at 655 Golfview Terrace in Buffalo Grove.

Police, firefighters and paramedics from Buffalo Grove responded about 12:51 p.m. Thursday, November 17, 2022 to a report of smoke coming out of the vents at Joyce Kilmer School, 655 Golfview Terrace in Buffalo Grove.




Firefighters on arrival connected their first due fire engine to a fire hydrant as a precaution, and raised the main aerial to the roof of the school to inspect the HVAC rooftop units. Tower Ladder 25’s crew discovered the source of the smoke to be located at one of the rooftop units at the school by 1:17 p.m.

The incident was secured and all students, who had evacuated the school building while wearing their winter coats, were immediately allowed back in the building. Some students were already outside for recess.




Community Consolidated School District 21 Kilmer school officials reported to parents that at approximately 12:45 p.m. Kilmer elementary school administration responded to a strong smoke odor coming from a vent near the kindergarten and first grade classrooms. During this time all students were either at lunch or recess. The administration immediately evacuated the building and called the fire department. School officials said the fire department determined that the cause of smoke and odor was a burnt out HVAC exhaust fan. As soon as the building was cleared by the fire department, students safely re-entered the building.

Official said they were so proud of their students and staff during this unexpected emergency. All students followed directions and were quiet as well as respectful, according to a notice on the Joyce Kilmer website. Students were reassured that the building is safe, and were commended on their behavior.

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The information in this article is an early report published before any summary information was confirmed or released by police or fire authorities.

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Firefighters at the scene of a smoke investigation at Joyce Kilmer Elementary School.
Firefighters at the scene of a smoke investigation at Joyce Kilmer Elementary School.
Students evacuated from the school building while firefighters investigated the source of smoke coming from vents at the school on Thursday, November 17, 2022
Students evacuated from the school building while firefighters investigated the source of smoke coming from vents at the school on Thursday, November 17, 2022.
Students evacuated from the school building while firefighters investigated the source of smoke coming from vents at the school on Thursday, November 17, 2022
Students evacuated from the school building while firefighters investigated the source of smoke coming from vents at the school on Thursday, November 17, 2022.




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Firefighters at the scene of a smoke investigation at Joyce Kilmer Elementary School
Firefighters at the scene of a smoke investigation at Joyce Kilmer Elementary School.
Firefighters at the scene of a smoke investigation at Joyce Kilmer Elementary School
Firefighters at the scene of a smoke investigation at Joyce Kilmer Elementary School.
Firefighters at the scene of a smoke investigation at Joyce Kilmer Elementary School.
Firefighters at the scene of a smoke investigation at Joyce Kilmer Elementary School.

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