VANDALIA, Ohio (WDTN) — The Super 8 Motel off of East National Road in Vandalia is being forced to close after the Vandalia Fire Marshal deemed the building unsafe.
Since January 2019, Vandalia Fire Inspectors have been citing the Super 8 Motel with multiple fire code violations. Rich Hopkins, the Communication Manager for the City of Vandalia, said the latest inspection on Monday, August 15, 2022, was the final straw.
“We’ve given this business ample opportunity to fix the deficiencies, and at this point, that’s not been done. And finally, we got to the point where it’s not a safe structure,” Hopkins said.
On Friday, August 19, 2022, the Vandalia Fire Marshal revoked the hotel’s operational permit. The hotel’s general managers were also arrested and charged with misdemeanors for violating the fire code.
According to the fire marshal’s ruling, the building fire suppression system was not functioning properly. Hot plates and ovens were also being used inside sleeping rooms, and they observed overall poor conditions.
“There were a number of rooms where the smoke detectors were inoperable, or in some cases they were purposely disabled by the people living in those rooms so they could smoke in the room without the detectors going off. And in some cases, we had smoke detectors that weren’t hooked to a central line,” Hopkins said.
Vandalia Fire and Building Officials reportedly came up with solutions to fix these problems and gave the hotel managers a time frame to complete them; however, the repairs were never finished. Hopkins said the safety of the guests was at risk, and they needed to act quickly.
“Our Division of Fire and our management takes the Ohio Fire Code very seriously, and when there are issues, we’re going to take action. And hopefully the impact is other businesses will know that and they’ll do what they need to do to prevent this from happening to them,” Hopkins explained.
The building was ordered to be vacated and secured by Monday, August 22, 2022. Once that happens, the general managers have several options moving forward.
“They can appeal the ruling. Beyond that, they can make the repairs and then reapply for a permit in the future, if in fact that’s what they want to do,” Hopkins said.
2 News reached out to employees at the Super 8 for a comment, but they declined. 2 News also reached out to the Wyndham Hotels corporate office for a comment, but they have not replied.