Harvard University Buildings Evacuated over Explosives Alert

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By Umberto Bacchi | December 17, 2013 1:55 AM EST

State and local police respond to reports of explosives at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts (Reuters)

Four buildings at Harvard University's campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts, were evacuated over reports of explosives on site.

Harvard and Cambridge police were called to the scene to investigate the unconfirmed reports, authorities at the Ivy League university said.

Harvard tweeted:

The university stressed that no explosion occurred and said the evacuation was ordered "out of an abundance of caution".

"The Harvard University Police Department (HUPD) received an unconfirmed report that explosives may have been placed in four buildings on campus: the Science Center, Thayer, Sever and Emerson Halls," a university spokesperson said.

"Out of an abundance of caution, the buildings have been evacuated while the report is investigated. Harvard's focus is on the safety of our students, faculty and staff."

A few hours after the alarm was raised, the university said two buildings, Thayer and Emerson Hall, had been cleared and students might return.

Sever and Science Center remained closed pending investigation.

"Report of bombs on campus remains unconfirmed," A University spokesperson added.

Final exams scheduled for the day were cancelled and some students speculated it might have been a false alarm.

"I have a good guess somebody called it in so they wouldn't have to take an exam," student Alexander Ryjik said. "It's frustrating because now the exam will have to be postponed.

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