A small fire erupted in the worship area of the Maine Jewish Museum on Thursday afternoon, but the building’s sprinkler system minimized damage caused by the flames.

More concerning, a Portland fire official said, is the amount of water damage that the museum and its sanctuary suffered as firefighters worked to clear out smoke and hunt down the last remaining pockets of fire inside.

“There’s a lot of water damage,” said Deputy Fire Chief John Hendricks. “Quite a bit of water was put into the building.”

The sanctuary area is on the second floor of the three-story building, Hendricks said, and the fire appears to have centered in cabinets behind the altar. The building, located at 267 Congress St., also houses the Etz Chaim Synagogue.

No one was injured during the fire and its response, he said.

The Portland Fire Department is investigating the cause of the fire, Hendricks said.

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