Fire alarm clears SLP during lunch hours


Students re-enter the SLP after evacuating the building due to a fire alarm.

Students re-enter the SLP after evacuating the building due to a fire alarm.

On Tuesday, Oct. 7 at approximately 1:25 p.m., students and faculty were startled by the screeching sounds of the fire alarm system echoing throughout the Student Life Pavilion. The building was evacuated after the alarm system was triggered by a smoking oven in Tu Mercado.

Students walked slowly down the stairwell, carrying their bags and books. One student attempted to balance a hot bowl of pho while making his descent to the second floor exit. Many students appeared annoyed by the abrupt interruption.

Junior Diana Fontaine said the alarm interrupted her work on a Be Blue Go Green project.

“We were in the middle of working on a project and it was rather annoying to be evacuated because we were almost done,” Fontaine said.

Joi Gordon, who works at Frank’s Smoothie Bar, said the alarm system detected smoke from an oven in Tu Mercado.

“The oven had something too hot in it and it started smoking,” Gordon said. “It’s under control. It was just smoke.”

Nicki Schuessler, director of university centers and student activities, said the both the alarm systems and the students responded appropriately.

“It was not a drill, and all systems functioned properly,” Schuessler said. “Smoke or heat set off the alarm and everyone should always evacuate when they hear an alarm.”

Schuessler hopes that, despite the minor nature of the incident, students will still quickly respond to all fire alarms on campus.

“The problem with sometimes identifying what [the cause of the fire] is, is that people will then think from now on that it’s not important and they shouldn’t evacuate,” Schuessler said. “And then that’s when we could have a fire.”