News, On Campus

Students Evacuate After Faulty Fire Alarm Goes Off in Bapst Library

Firetrucks and Boston College Police Department (BCPD) officers rushed to campus on Monday night after a faulty fire alarm went off in Bapst Library and forced students and employees to evacuate.

Lightning flashed across the sky and a storm drenched BC’s campus around 9:15 p.m., when a number of students trudged out of the library onto a soaked Linden Lane.

Audrey Morken, who was studying in Bapst at the time, said she remembered seeing a flash of light outside the building right before the alarm went off. Morken also said she saw four to five firetrucks arrive on campus after the evacuation.

“People started standing up and packing stuff up but looking confused and laughing,” said Morken, MCAS ’24. “So then we all slowly started leaving, and by the time I was out, there was a police car.”

A Newton Fire Department official on the scene said the alarm was triggered by a lightning strike, but a BCPD officer also on the scene said it was not set off by anything in particular and that the building is just old.

The building was cleared for re-entry, and the faulty alarm will be replaced soon, the BCPD officer said.

“[It was] very disorienting, not fun, but also kind of comedic,” Morken said. “Everyone was laughing and very confused, but then it was pouring and storming, so a little scary.”

The incident on Monday night marks the second time that members of the BC community have had to vacate a building on main campus this year. Students and faculty evacuated Devlin Hall on Aug. 31 due to smoke from an electrical control box, according to Associate Vice President for University Communications Jack Dunn.

No one was injured in either incident.

9/20/2022 11:02 a.m.: A previous version of this article incorrectly attributed quotes, and that error has been corrected.

September 19, 2022