Written by Neil Frawley
An electrical malfunction forced the evacuation of the Mass Media building on Monday afternoon.
The incident took place near the journalism lab where a smell of burning rubber emanated from the ceiling tiles.
Students became alarmed by the foul smell and quickly informed Dennis Conway, assistant professor of mass media, about it.
“I went near the front door, and it indeed smelled like burning rubber,” Conway said. “At that point we figured we should probably call the police and fire [station] and eventually Plant Operations.”
According to VSU faculty members, the electrical problem began place sometime after Plant Operations had done some work on the ceiling lights in the mass media building.
“Our lights had been out in the building for like a week,” Marie Elliott, assistant professor of mass media, said. “[Plant Operations] was coming over to fix that, and some of the drop ceiling had been left open. The smell was coming either from in the ceiling or the [journalism] lab.”
Mass media faculty members, however, remain unsure as to the exact cause of the situation.
“I don’t know what they were working on, to tell the truth,” Conway said.
Fortunately, the evacuation did not take long to resolve.
“It was between 20 and 30 minutes,” Elliott said. “Everything was fine. It smelled electrical, but they said everything was fine.”
Though the evacuation did not last long, it did cause a few classes to be canceled.
“My classes by both professor Browns were cancelled,” Claire Contevita, junior mass media major, said.
Despite the brief commotion caused by the electrical wiring, nobody got hurt.
“Safety was great, the fire people were great and Plant Operations fixed it the next day,” Conway said.
Eliott also felt that the situation was handle well.
“The police were awesome and all the kids were great and everyone did their part to help out,” she said.