Stark Learning Center evacuated after alarm sounds

Christine Lee, News Editor

Students, faculty and staff in Stark Learning Center were evacuated on Thursday, March 21 due to a fire alarm being set off in the basement of the building.

Public Safety said dust and debris from construction in the basement of Stark set off the alarm sensors in the basement, triggering the fire alarm to go off in the entire building.

Everyone in the building was led out, although some students didn’t believe it was an actual alarm.

“When the alarm went off, most of us kind of stayed (in the lobby) and nobody thought it was real and then all of a sudden everyone from the testing room (Stark 101) came out and Dr. (Greg) Harms came up to us and said ‘you have to evacuate Public Safety just announced it,’ and we’re like, ‘oh my god, it’s real,’ and then we all left,” sophomore biology major Ashley Legg, one of those evacuated, said.

Legg said students assumed it was a false alarm. Many students and professors in Stark reported hearing about a gas leak causing the alarm.

One professor said she and her students were getting headaches as a result of an odor on the third floor. However, Public Safety Manager Jerry Rebo said gas was not a factor in the alarm being set off.

“There were no reports of gas causing the alarm,” Rebo said.

Rebo said facilities was on the scene for up to an hour after the initial alarm to air out the area under construction and said everything is now back to normal.

He explained this is the first time in two years the fire alarm has gone off in Stark Learning Center.

“It was the same problem last time, contractors were doing chemical clean-up,” Rebo said.

Those in Stark who were evacuated were allowed back into the building within a few minutes after the alarm went off.