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updated: 10/14/2013 9:56 AM

Lack of fire protection closes 2 haunted houses

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Associated Press

GALESBURG -- Two Halloween haunted houses in west central Illinois won't be operating this year because organizers aren't able to meet state fire safety rules.

The Register-Mail in Galesburg reports that Gilson Haunted School near Galesburg and Fright High in Abingdon will close. They were once popular attractions, raising money for a Boy Scout troop and a nonprofit organization.

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The Illinois State Fire Marshal considers haunted houses to be "special amusement buildings" that must be protected by a fire sprinkler system or other fire suppression equipment -- even though they are temporary.

Organizers say they understand the rules are intended to keep people safe, but they can't afford to add sprinkler systems to the buildings where they've set up the fundraising haunted houses in the past.

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