Ally Buchanan
Ally Buchanan
Ally is in her second year at Renaissance College, pursuing minors in Political Science and English. She is originally from Hampton, New Brunswick
September 12, 2019

Breaking: Explosion at Head Hall

The complex was evacuated within minutes of the alarm | Photo by Brad Ackerson

A fire broke out as a result of a chemical spill in a lab in UNB’s Head Hall at approximately 3:30p.m Sept. 12. 

Students and professors in the engineering and computer science building were interrupted by an alarm sounding throughout the halls at 3:30p.m.

A fire drill was held in the building yesterday, and so students assumed that this, too, was simply routine. 

Reena Petrick, a second year electrical engineering student, was studying in the building at the time of the fire. 

“One of my friends saw a security guard pulling the fire alarm on the first floor. None of us really took it seriously until we smelled the smoke,” she said. 

The Fredericton Fire Department responded almost immediately, and the complex was evacuated within minutes of the alarm.

While students have remained gathered around the complex for hours following the event, Head Hall will be closed for the remainder of this evening. 

At 6:00p.m., three hours following the initial alarm, the cause of the fire was confirmed to be a chemical spill in one of the building's labs, signaling a resolution to the incident.

Both UNB Security and the University released statements regarding the incident as it progressed, reassuring the public that Head Hall and the surrounding complex have been secured, and that no one was harmed. 

“All evening classes and activities in the Head Hall Complex (Gillin, ITC, Old/New Engineering buildings) are cancelled for the remainder of the evening, Sept. 12, 2019. [The Fredericton Fire Department] is on site to assess the situation following a localized incident. There have been no injuries,” reads the statement released by the university on Twitter. 

Following the events of the evening, classes and activities in the complex were planned to continue in the morning as schedule.  

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