11 students are reported injured while jumping through windows in panic following an alarm that fire disaster was emerging while the Bong County Technical College (BCTC) building was allegedly crushing on them during an exam.
Our correspondent in the county says it was a scene of fear at the BCTC campus on Tuesday, 26 February when students who were already seated to commence an exam began jumping through windows from first and second floors of the building out of fear.
It was rumored that there was an outbreak of fire and the building in which the students were due to take exam was also collapsing.
But our correspondent adds that the alarm that caused students to panic and flee at risky directions was not confirmed when scores of them began running for their lives, leaving 11 persons injured.
Of the 11 wounded students, four have been treated and discharged by Medical Doctors at the Phebe Hospital, according to the College’s Executive Administrative Officer Dr. Andrew S. Allakamenin.
Among those injured are two pregnant women, one of whom has been discharged. Other victims are still undergoing medication.
An unidentified student who jumped from the second floor of the building sustained major injury both from the leg and the neck and has undergone surgery.
Meanwhile, Dr. Allakamenin told reporters in the county during an impromptu press conference that the remaining seven students are undergoing treatment at the hospital.
“We heard some of our friends shouting, oh there is fire! And following that, we all started escaping to save our lives,” Peter F. Jackson of the Nursing Department told this paper.
He says it is actually a sad day especially for the students who sustained major injuries.
“For me I was almost like losing hope when we started running. But when I observed that the situation was becoming serious, I kept moving and with no other alternative, I only jumped through one of the first floor windows and unfortunately there was a broken bottle under my feet,” Patience Suah Jallah, an agriculture student from Lofa County explains.
“I firstly wanted to jump from the third floor but I was scare so when I came at the second floor, I jumped,” student Jallah concludes.
The BCTC Administration expresses regrets over the situation and promises to ensure the treatment of the students.
The Liberia National Police Bong Detachment and the College’s private Securities have launched an investigation to establish the actual cause of the situation.
Our correspondent who covered the situation says this is not the first time for such thing to happen.
It can be recalled that years back, some students sustained injuries as a result of rumors that the building was breaking.
But at that time, an investigation established that it was mixed cement that fell from contractors who were working on the third floor of the building.
By Joseph Titus Yekeryan in Bong –Edited by Winston W. Parley