Students, staff forced to evacuate SF State library after triggered fire alarm


People enter the J. Paul Leonard Library after being evacuated due to the fire alarm that went off at approximately 2:15 p.m. at SF State in San Francisco Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2012. Photo by Godofredo Vasquez / Xpress

SF State students busy studying for their upcoming midterms were evacuated from the J. Paul Leonard Library as the second fire alarm of the day echoed throughout the new building.

The alarm went off at approximately 2:15 according to phone calls to the newsroom by SF State student Joe Fitzgerald who was tweeting about the library evacuation at the scene.

The alarm was triggered by dust stirred up by a construction crew working in the building’s basement, according to San Francisco Police Officer Chris Jones. Police did a sweep of the building at 2:26 p.m. to make sure it was safe for students to re-enter the premises. Staff were allowed back inside the library two minutes later.

Shortly after that the herd of students were allowed back inside as a safety officer yelled, “No stampedes, OK!?”

Molecular biology major Ugochi Ikeme, 27, was about to drop off her checked-out laptop and head home before the alarm went off, blocking her out of the building.

“I’ll probably just pay the $2.50 fine for being late,” Ikeme said after getting tired of waiting around.

Like many others, Ikeme had a sense that there was no real threat to the building. “Someone was probably just microwaving some popcorn or something.”

Graduate nursing students Kayla Bush, 23, Marie Hamilton, 23, Amanda Gaub, 26, were studying for their upcoming midterm when they were ushered out of the building and away from their books.