Harvard Evacuates Four Buildings, Cancels Exams After Morning Bomb Scare

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Dec. 16 2013 10:35 AM

Harvard Evacuates Four Buildings, Postpones Exams Following Morning Bomb Scare

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Harvard University evecuated several building on campus this morning

File photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

A developing story out of greater Boston this morning, where Harvard officials have ordered the evacuation of four sites on the school's Cambridge campus. The university sent out the following emergency alert to students shortly after 9 a.m.: "Alert: Unconfirmed reports of explosives at four sites on campus: Science Center, Thayer, Sever, and Emerson. Evacuate those buildings now."

Josh Voorhees Josh Voorhees

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

As the school stressed in a follow-up tweet, the reports of "bombs placed on campus are unconfirmed," adding that there have been "NO reports of explosions" this morning. Cambridge and university police are both currently on the scene, and at least some of today's exams have been canceled, according to the Harvard Crimson.

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We'll update with more here once additional information becomes available. For now, we'll keep our fingers crossed that this was just a finals-week false alarm. Obviously this being Harvard we're talking about, the ongoing scare is going to garner a good bit more attention that it would on another campus. Still, it comes at a tense time following the one-year anniversary of Newtown and Friday's high school shooting in Colorado.

Update 1:40 p.m.: Police say they have not yet found any explosives. Authorities have deemed two of the four buildings safe, but continue to check the other two. This is, thankfully, beginning to look more and more like a false alarm. One police force tells the Boston Globe that the scare was triggered by a morning email.

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This post has been updated.