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Solar panels atop Hamilton County jail catch fire

A view of solar panels atop the Hamilton County Jail in Noblesville, Indiana, in 2018. (Photo Provided, File)

NOBLESVILLE, Ind. (WISH) — Solar panels atop the Hamilton County jail caught fire Tuesday night, the sheriff’s office and Noblesville Fire Department said.

A 911 caller reported about 8:35 p.m. smoke on the southeast corner of the jail, which is next to the sheriff’s department and a juvenile detention center at 18100 Cumberland Road. That’s just northwest of state roads 37 and 32.

Deputy Ryan McClain, public information officer for Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, said two solar panels caught fire. No inmates were hurt. There was no evacuation.

Capt. Trevor Hash of Noblesville Fire Department said the rubber on the roof and the solar panels suffered some damage.

Hash said a few inmates were displaced but not removed from jail.

About 9:40 p.m., a fire investigator remained on the roof to try to determine the cause.

The solar panels generate part of the power for the jail. The sheriff’s office told News 8 in 2018 that more than 9,300 panels were used in the $8 million project. County officials at the time said the panels would save the county $25 million in utility and maintenance costs over the next 25 years. 

A 911 caller reported about 8:35 p.m. smoke on the southeast corner of the Hamilton County, Indiana, jail, which is next to the sheriff’s department and a juvenile detention center at 18100 Cumberland Road. (Photo Provided/Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office)

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