Gas leak or smell of durian? More than 500 evacuated from Australian university library

PHOTO: The Straits Times

SINGAPORE - About 550 people were evacuated from an Australian university library on Friday afternoon (May 10) after reports of a strong smell of gas.

The source of the smell was later traced to "a durian fruit in one of our bins", said a Facebook post by the University of Canberra Library.

The Australian Capital Territory Emergency Services Agency said in an update on its website around 3.30pm local time that firefighters had searched the building and located the source of the smell.

Hazmat crews also conducted atmospheric monitoring to ensure the area was safe.

The university library was then reopened.

We are open! The lingering gas-like smell in the building is completely safe - someone left a durian fruit in one of our bins!

Posted by University of Canberra Library on Thursday, May 9, 2019

In a Facebook comment, the university library added that the durian had been removed from the building in a sealed bag.

Facebook user Amitia Kirana said she thought food and drinks could not be brought into the library.

The library replied: "We allow food and covered drinks on all floors now, but hot food is only allowed on level B ... That said, it's not appropriate student conduct if they did it on purpose, and lack of common sense if they didn't."

The library also temporarily changed its Facebook profile picture to a sign that showed durians were prohibited.

ALSO READ: 'Drunk' on durians: Chinese man fails breathalyser test after eating king of fruits

This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.