By: Kristin Baitinger
A small fire smoked and sparked to life on the first floor of Dulaney Hall at 8:00 a.m. Nov. 11, interrupting morning routines and sending students to the street.
The fire started in the first-floor trash room of the dorm causing sprinklers to shower down and alarm systems to pierce eardrums.
“My roommate had to wake me up because I thought the alarm was in my head,” Jackie Nesbeth, a senior Business Communication major who lived in the building said. She was “sleeping when the fire alarm went off.”
“We had to sit in Ratcliffe for an hour, but before that, they gave us fifteen minutes to go inside and grab our essentials,” Nesbeth said.
Residents safely evacuated the building, and no one was injured. The County Fire Department responded to the incident and eventually issued an “all clear” so that students could go back into the building and return to their rooms.
Prior to that, students were barred from the building. At 11:40 am an email was sent out informing students they could return. In the end, the fire was judged to be relatively small and damage to the building was minimal.
According to the email, sent by Cristina Garcia, Director of Resident Life and Housing, the determining cause of the fire was burnt and smoldering food that was deposited too quickly into a trash bin.
As a reminder, Stevenson released fire safety tips and evacuation protocols. If the fire alarm sounds, students are urged to take it seriously and promptly evacuate the premises utilizing the nearest exit. Make sure to take keys, their student ID, and a mask before exiting. Elevators are not functional when a fire alarm goes off so go to the nearest staircase leading to outside.