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Four Ohio State buildings evacuated after bomb threat

19 a.m. on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 in Columbus, Ohio. OSU students were evacuated from William Oxley Thompson Memorial Library, Scott Lab, McPherson Chemical Lab, and Smith Lab.

Ohio State officials announced at 8:41 a.m. today that police were investigating bomb threats in four campus buildings.

E-mails and texts sent to those enrolled in the university’s Buckeye Alert system said the threat was linked to McPherson Chemical Laboratory, Scott Laboratory, Smith Laboratory and William Oxley Thompson Memorial Library. The text message said to “Avoid these buildings and area,” which had been evacuated earlier in the morning.

Students and those working in the buildings were evacuated and directed to safe areas, according to a university safety message on the Ohio State website.

The text message alert also said updates on osu.edu, however at the time of the text alert, there was no information available online.

The FBI alerted OSU officials at 8:19 a.m. that the agency had received threats regarding the four buildings. It is unclear how the FBI received the tip or if there are any suspects.

Besides OSU Police, the FBI and Columbus Fire Department bomb squad are on campus investigating. Law enforcement officials have also called in bomb-sniffing dogs from local airport security to help search buildings.

Yellow caution tape surrounds all four buildings and extends down 18th Ave., blocking access to all buildings. Police officers are directing everyone away from police barriers. Some classes in nearby buildings have reportedly been canceled.

Staff from Thompson library were relocated to the geology library in Orton Hall after OSU officials received the threats.

“It would be standard procedure that they would probably have dogs in all four of the buildings,” Larry Allen, communications coordinator at Thompson library said.

The  buildings will remain closed until further notice.

To receive the Buckeye Alerts, students must enroll in the opt-in system. Officials said about 32,000 people received the text message alerts this morning, but some parents of students told The Lantern that their children had not received the notification.

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