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Fire breaks out at Dulles control tower

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A small fire forced the evacuation of the Dulles International Airport control tower for twenty minutes Friday morning, but caused only minimum disruption to air traffic, officials said.

The fire occurred at 9:10 a.m. in the monitor of a computer used in a training lab on the 12th floor of the 14-story tower, said FAA spokesman Jim Peters. Controllers temporarily handed over operations to another FAA facility in Leesburg, Virginia.

Two departures were delayed -- one for 16 minutes, the other for 19 minutes -- and one arriving airplane was delayed 15 minutes, said Peters, who called the disruption "minimal." The incident was over by 9:30 a.m.

Seven employees evacuated the observation level at the top of the tower, and 15 left the radar room. Administrative staff stayed in the building.

Peters said a supervisor removed the burning monitor from the building.



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