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Brookdale's Lincroft Campus Partially Evacuated After Acidic Odor

Methane gas leaking from the sewage system caused the odor, the Middletown Fire Chief said.

The Bankier Building, also known as the MAN building, was investigated by the Middletown Township Fire Dept. Friday for a strong odor. Credit: Christina Johnson
The Bankier Building, also known as the MAN building, was investigated by the Middletown Township Fire Dept. Friday for a strong odor. Credit: Christina Johnson
Update, 11:45 a.m.: All buildings in the Main Academic Complex except the library and Main Academic North building will open at noon.

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Brookdale evacuated the Main Academic Complex, Advanced Technology Center, library, and the Center for Admissions and Registration buildings at its Lincroft campus due to an acidic odor in the area. Employees working in these areas were ordered to report to the Student Life Center. 

Middletown Fire Department Chief John Gorsegner said the smell was caused by methane gas from the sewage system in the building. It was documented at 46 parts per million. "That's a lot of methane gas. It should be none," he said.

Starting around 7:30 a.m., the parking lot was lined with emergency vehicles from Brookdale campus police, Lincroft, River Plaza, Middletown, East Keansburg fire companies, as well as Middletown's Special Services and the Monmouth County Hazmat team. First Aid squads from Holmdel and Port Monmouth were also on hand, but nobody required treatment. The emergency vehicles cleared the area around noon. 

Classes scheduled before 10 a.m. were canceled. A of 9:45 a.m., classes scheduled after 2 p.m. were still expected to take place.

The campus has been evacuated on two previous occasions this year--once in February 2013 and once in July 2013--due to odors.

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