Evacuation of UA studio blamed on engine fumes

Posted: January 27, 2018 at 1:02 a.m.

FAYETTEVILLE -- Engine fumes from nearby construction equipment likely caused an odor that led to a brief evacuation Thursday of a University of Arkansas, Fayetteville art building, a city fire official said.

Firefighters with air monitoring equipment found no dangerous or hazardous conditions inside UA's Sculpture Studio, said Capt. Jason Hood with the Fayetteville Fire Department. Emissions from equipment such as a backhoe and concrete saw likely were drawn into air handler units for the two-level building a few blocks from the main campus, Hood said.

Sam King, coordinator of UA's foundation art classes, said he decided to cut class short for approximately 35 students after being alerted to the smell. Students elsewhere in the building also were told to leave as firefighters arrived at the scene several minutes after 11 a.m.

By 11:45 a.m., fewer than 20 students waited outside. King said he reported having a headache, but it quickly went away upon leaving the building. By 12:15 p.m., students were allowed back inside. Construction is ongoing for a library storage facility near the Sculpture Studio.

NW News on 01/27/2018