LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — An explosion at a residence hall on the University of Nevada, Reno campus injured 8 people in the building and sent a cloud of smoke over the campus on Friday. Two people were treated and released at a hospital, according to CBS affiliate KTVN-Reno.
A fire chief said the explosion caused major damage to Argenta Hall, KTNV reported.
Emergency crews responded to the incident, and campus police described the situation as a “utilities accident.” The cause is described as “mechanical failure.”
There is extensive water damage to the building, fire officials said.
A Reno city spokesman said minor injuries have been reported and there is a “partial collapse” of the dormitory.
City spokesman Jon Humbert said officials were working to determine whether the building was structurally sound.
He did not have details on how many students were inside.
A UNR student said she thought she was experiencing an earthquake when the explosion rocked the dormitory where she was in her room watching Netflix.
Raven Green told The Associated Press she heard a loud boom Friday and felt the building shake. She says she opened her door and could hardly see in a hallway full of smoke and debris, with water spraying everywhere.
Green says the dorms aren’t completely full this summer, but there were still lots of residents. She didn’t know how many people were in the building at the time of the explosion.
The 19-year-old Green says she climbed over doors and pieces of drywall to reach the stairs but found them broken. She raced back to her room and was evacuated about 40 minutes later.
Authorities said Friday that police officers and firefighters were on scene and advised people to stay away.
Classes were canceled Friday afternoon.
Photos posted to social media showed extensive damage spanning multiple floors of a dormitory.
“My son says the whole side of the Argenta building is destroyed,” said Chris Floyd, who tweeted a photo after the incidents that showed smoke rising above campus buildings.