Fire pipe opened during night at Royal Columbian





The Columbia Tower at Royal Columbian Hospital flooded yesterday when someone opened up a fire pipe in the top-floor stairwell.

Fraser Health believes a "confused patient" opened a fire pipe in New Westminster’s Royal Columbian Hospital early yesterday morning flooding several floors of Columbia Tower.

The pipe was opened in the stairwell of the tower’s top floor at about 3:30 a.m. Water cascaded down the stairwell and elevator shafts causing flooding on a number of floors.

"Quick thinking staff used sheets and blankets and whatever they could find to create dams," said Carolyn Warner, a spokeswoman for Fraser Health. "It kept the water from entering patient care areas so no patients or doctors were affected."

There are no surveillance cameras in the stairwell, but the hospital believes that a confused patient was responsible for the flooding, not vandals.