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Residents of The Radian were affected by a hot water outage on Feb. 18. Credit: Abhiram Juvvadi

During the past week, the College House at the Radian was evacuated four times due to recurring fire alarms and lost access to hot water for at least 48 hours.

Those in the Radian at the time of the four fire alarms evacuated to the area in front of the building to leave entrances accessible to firefighters. Radian residents also received nine separate emails providing information and updates about the ongoing hot water restoration process — including an email stating that the issue was rectified before finding that some rooms still lacked hot water.

An email to Radian residents sent on Feb. 15 at 3:30 p.m. by Elijah Martinez — the Residential Services manager at the Radian — detailed the causes of the fire alarms. The email suggested that, in all four cases, “the fire alarm system reacted properly.”

“Two of those alarms were activated in the retail dining located next to the Radian, and two were activated from an apartment in the Radian,” Martinez wrote.

College and Wharton sophomore and Radian resident Allie de Asla said that she is worried the frequent activation of the alarms will deter students from evacuating, potentially causing issues in the event of a real fire emergency.

College senior and resident advisor for the Radian Colin Ly said that — while the fire alarms were properly functioning — the frequency of the fire alarms likely desensitized residents.

“I would just ask that people do try to take [the fire alarms] seriously and recognize that it is a preventative measure to minimize injury,” Ly said.

In the same week, the Radian also lost access to hot water — forcing residents to use other means to shower. 

The nine emails to Radian residents stated that fixing the issue required the installation of new boilers. While the emails initially suggested that hot water would be restored by the end of Feb. 19, the date was later pushed back to Feb. 20 due to required testing — and a Feb. 22 email wrote that rooms on “multiple floors” of the building were still experiencing issues.

A Feb. 19 email from Residential Services also suggested that students shower in Pottruck Gymnasium as an alternative to in their dorms.

“Please bring your shower supplies, including toiletries and towels, with you to Pottruck,” a Feb. 19 email wrote.

As of publication, the most recent email — which was sent at approximately 5:09 p.m. on Feb. 22 — says that the Radian's contractor made adjustments to the hot water system and plans to return on Feb. 23 to monitor the system. The email followed an update earlier on Feb. 22 suggesting that Residential Services reached out to the contractor to investigate the issue on site, stating that the contractor was expected to arrive within an hour.

The hot water has still not been fixed in all dorms as of publication time.