Safety agency fines Florence prison after fire

Posted at 7:19 AM, Mar 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-07 09:19:14-05

Arizona's workplace safety agency has fined a private prison operator $3,500 for violations discovered after a fire erupted at its prison in Florence.

The fire started July 25 in a clothes dryer at the prison run by Corrections Corporation of America. The flames went up a vent and ignited the roof, sending up a plume of black smoke that was visible for miles. No one was injured.

Records released Friday show Arizona Division of Occupational Safety and Health inspectors visited the prison following the fire and determined CCA violated rules requiring evacuation plans for staff members.

The agency recommended a $4,500 fine but the Industrial Commission of Arizona lowered the fine to $3,500 at its February 11 meeting. CCA didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.