Last updated: June 27. 2014 10:12AM - 5543 Views
By - rdupuis@civitasmedia.com



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HANOVER TWP. — Employees at Navient, formerly known as Sallie Mae, returned Friday, a day after they were sent home for the day due to a fire that erupted in an electrical closet at the facility in the Hanover Industrial Estates.
 
Navient spokesperson Nikki A. Lavoie said Friday morning that the facility reopened for business.
 
Hanover Township Fire Department Incident Commander Stanley Browski said the fire started in a second-floor electrical closet and started to break through the door when a maintenance worker hit it with a fire extinguisher. The fire was contained to a closet.
 
The sprinkler system was engaged because of the amount and degree of heat. Fire crews placed salvage covers “over everything from the first floor” to protect company equipment, Browski said.
 
“At around 2:15 p.m., there was a fire at the Navient Servicing Center in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., located in the Hanover Industrial Park, where about 1,050 people are employed,” Lavoie wrote in an email.
 
“Emergency personnel responded to the fire and all employees were safely evacuated from the building. We are grateful to the emergency responders who helped ensure the safety of our employees,” Lavoie added.
 
The facility formerly was known as Sallie Mae, prior to a name change that took effect earlier this year.
 
The new name took effect April 30, after student loan giant Sallie Mae decided to split its business into two unique, publicly traded companies.
 
While Sallie Mae will remain the name of the company's consumer banking business, Navient handles loan management, servicing and asset recovery.
 
Servicing continues under the Sallie Mae name during a transition period for customers this fall, Lavoie said.
 
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