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Power outage, explosion, evacuations at UC Berkeley

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Updated: 9/30/2013 11:15 pm
From and wires

BERKELEY, Calif. - A campus-wide power outage at UC Berkeley on Monday preceded a massive explosion that resulted in evacuations and injuries, according to reports.

"An explosion on campus around California Hall has injured an unconfirmed number of people, prompting officials to declare a campus emergency and order an evacuation of the campus around 6:40 p.m. Monday," according to The Daily Californian.

The power outage was first reported around 4:45 p.m. Monday and after emergency generators turned on, smoke could be seen coming from one of them near Bancroft Library.

The outage resulted in all classes being canceled and students were told to suspend lab activity and leave the academic buildings, campus emergency officials said.

Then shortly before 7 p.m., an explosion was reported near Sather Tower, Berkeley acting fire Chief Gil Dong said.

Witnesses described the explosion as being a two-story fireball shooting into the air.

At 6:50 campus emergency messaging thru WarnMe called for all to evacuate campus, according to UC Berkeley Police.

Four ambulances were called to respond to the incident but Dong did not have information about how many people had been injured or what the extent of their injuries was as of 7:30 p.m.

Campus emergency officials said that the campus was being evacuated.

The cause of the power outage and explosion had not been determined by Monday evening, Dong said.

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