Power problems force students out of William Pitt Union

By Dale Shoemaker / Assistant News Editor

An emergency power outage forced the William Pitt Union to close at 6 p.m. Tuesday, according to WPU management.

The backup generator, also known as life-safety generator, powers the fire alarm system and the emergency lighting if the main generator were to malfunction, University spokesman John Fedele said.

“If there were to be a power failure now, the building would be evacuated as a precaution, since there would be no power for the fire alarms or for the stairwell lighting,” Fedele said.

The main generator did not malfunction on Tuesday. The malfunctioning backup generator only affected the WPU.

“We are in the process of getting a rental until we can get a permanent replacement,” Fedele said in an email.

This is not the first time a generator has ceased to work, Fedele said.

“Equipment will, from time to time, wear out and need to be replaced,” he said.

Fedele said the University expects the installation of a rental generator before Wednesday morning. Students were asked to leave the WPU early so Facilities Management could install the rental generator.

The University hopes to reopen the Union by 7 a.m.

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