COM fire alarms activated by smoke machine

By Samantha Joslin

Everyone in the COM building evacuated to the COM plaza until the fire alarms stopped flashing. Photo by Samantha Joslin.


The fire alarms were activated just after noon today. Photo by Samantha Joslin.

Fire alarms were activated in the Commons building today just after noon, leading students and staff to evacuate into the Commons Plaza.


According to officer Dan Robles, the alarms were set off by a smoke machine on the third floor of the COM building, which was blowing smoke in a closed space. The machine was being used as a Halloween decoration near the student lounge.  


Anyone gathered in the plaza probably heard the crowd sing “Happy Birthday” near the end of the evacuation; the song, which spread quickly through the crowd, was in honor of student Shemar Kamara. 


“I think it was my friend that…started the singing,” Kamara said. “It felt special. I’m used to having [a song for] my birthday sang by a couple of my friends, but, like, having a whole crowd sing felt really [amazing].” 

Robles said that students and staff “did exactly what they were supposed to” as far as following the correct evacuation procedures.

Kamara (one from the left)’s friends encouraged the crowd to sing along to the “Happy Birthday” tune while recording on their phones. Photo by Samantha Joslin.

Story by Samantha Joslin



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