Odor of Gas on Campus on Wednesday - September 27, 2007

Odor of Gas on Campus

September 27, 2007

To The Columbia University Community:

Early yesterday afternoon, reports were received from the northern portions of the Morningside Campus to our Operations Desk regarding a smell of natural gas in the area and in buildings on the north side of the campus.

Fire Department personnel responded, in part based on similar reports from the adjacent community. As a precaution, the Department of Public Safety initiated the shut down of air intake systems and evacuated staff and students from several buildings on the north side of the campus. We also activated the fire alarm in Dodge to force evacuation.

Our preliminary report from the Fire Department was that there was some sort of gas leak in the Morningside Drive area, which was repaired. By mid-afternoon, the gas smell had dissipated and staff and students were allowed to return to all campus buildings. No further reports of natural gas odor were received by Public Safety.

We thank you for your cooperation and patience during the evacuation.

James F. McShane
Associate Vice President for
Public Safety
Columbia University
Low Library, Rm. 101
Mail Code 4301
535 W. 116th Street
New York, New Yor