Top floor of library evacuated after bomb scare



    The entire sixth floor of the Harold B. Lee Library and the southwest corner of the fifth floor were evacuated Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. because of a suspicious package.

    Rylan Chan, a security guard at the library, was roving the fifth floor when he heard a faint beeping noise coming from an aisle of books.

    “I thought it was an alarm going off on a stopwatch, but the sound kept emanating from a book,” Chan said.

    Chan said he called for backup and Brad Brough, another security guard, called the police.

    Two University Police officers reported and were shown where the book was, Chan said.

    The Provo and Utah County bomb squad was also called in, and they determined with a portable X-ray machine that the book did contain a clock-like device with no explosive danger, said Carri Jenkins, University Communications.

    Library security handled the situation well, Jenkins said. She said the security guards made a wise decision not to touch the package.

    Brough said the University Police kept the security guards well informed of what was going on and had a calming effect on the situation.

    James Roberts, a library security guard, agreed.

    “The University Police handled the situation with precision and professionalism. That was the main reason I was as comfortable as I was,” he said.

    After it was determined that the book was safe to move, the area was secured and patrons were allowed back on the fifth and sixth floor around 1 p.m., Chan said.

    The book was not a BYU library book, and Provo city is conducting an investigation, Jenkins said.

    Chan said all the security guards and employees at the library have been made aware of the situation and what to look for.

    Darron Woolley, a library security guard and also an emergency medical technician, was on duty when the incident occurred and was called for back up.

    “It was a good thing it wasn’t a bomb, but ‘Whoa,!’if it had been. It’s sobering to think this person would’ve been willing to take innocent lives,” Woolley said.

    Chan said it made him realize that security at the library is legitimate.

    “In a way, situations like these really help us from becoming complacent–it keeps us on our toes. It also keeps us humble and alert in knowing that even BYU isn’t invulnerable,” Chan said.

    Sgt. Wayne Beck said library security will continue with the security program they have and will continue to educate patrons about possible dangerous situations.

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