Tristan Ipock, The Paisano

“This was in the evening. It was a close call. I had just gotten out of the shower when the alarm went off,” said Cody Rivas, computer science sophomore  major, about one of his experiences with Chisholm Hall’s fire alarms, which go off at odd inopportune times.

“One time,  an alarm went off at 4 a.m. and I was extremely upset. It caused me to miss my next day of classes and really just led to me to have this stressful and terrible day,” said Joseph Robinson, a freshman business management major, on the sporadic nature of the fire alarms.

According to Laura Cantrell, Director of both Chisholm Hall and University Oaks, the fire alarms go off at Chisholm Hall because, “it’s a building wide system and when they go off, there is a reason. Usually, it’s popcorn, popcorn, popcorn and popcorn [for instance, leaving the popcorn in the microwave for too long].

“Very rarely is it a malfunction,” Cantrell said, “with a couple hundred people,  if everyone makes one mistake, theoretically, the fire alarms can go off every day of the year.”

Other reasons the alarms go off include burning food, warming up socks in the microwave, smoking in the dorm and not turning on the fan during a hot steamy shower, according to Cantrell.

“I feel like it’s just because Chisholm Hall is really old and the university spends so much money on getting every other dorm fixed and nice and doesn’t really care about Chisholm,” said Shanda Huntsberry,  a freshman English major.

Chisholm Hall staff understands that the fire alarms inconvenience their residents.

“We want to minimize that as much as possible. Because they go off enough, we don’t do arbitrary fire drills. We don’t need to add to it,” said Cantrell.

Although the fire alarms are a nuisance, it is important to remember what the fire alarm is made to do. So the next time the fire alarms at Chisholm Hall go off, follow protocol: get up, go outside and move away from the building.

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