A potentially disastrous fire was thwarted by a sprinkler system Wednesday night at an apartment building at 221 N. Franklin St., a Janesville Fire Department official said.
Firefighters responded to the building at about 9:18 p.m. Wednesday. A basket of clothing had started on fire in a closet, and the sprinklers kicked in and doused the flames, said fire department Capt. John McManus.
McManus said the fire could have caused a lot of damage if the sprinklers had not worked. He estimated the building sustained about $1,000 in water damage from the sprinkler system.
About 10 to 12 people were displaced. The Red Cross helped residents find overnight shelter.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.