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System installation locks Forbes entrances

Due to a 24-hour lockdown, the walk to Forbes College rooms has just become a little longer.

The lockout started on Monday, when the entries to the main building of Forbes became inaccessible to students 24 hours a day, even to those carrying proximity cards. The doors will remain locked until Friday.

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According to Forbes administrators, the installation of a new computerized security system is the cause for the lockdown.

"We have been installing and upgrading a new processor. We had to shut down the system in order to work on the hardware. When shut down, the system defaults to a locked position," said Associate Director of Public Safety Chuck Nouvel.

Because no notice was given to Forbes students regarding the lockout, students said they were surprised on Monday when they were left standing outside and were unable to enter the dormitories.

Student complaints

"I think it is important to inform the students when something like this happens," said Forbes resident Hayley Hawes '00. "It would be nice to know what is going on and why our proxes don't work, whether this is for security reasons or if something is broken."

In response to the complaint that students were unaware of the situation, Nouvel said, "We informed the college, so the students might want to check with them."

Due to the locked doors, students have been forced to use the main entrance to Forbes. However, most residents said they do not mind. "It's not a big deal. I just have to walk a little farther to a different entryway," said Kathleen Boon '01.

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To avoid inconvenience, students said they have taken matters into their own hands and have propped open several doors in an attempt to gain access.

"I have not felt any real inconvenience, because the doors have been propped open with rocks, so we can still get in," said John Hassler '00.

Safety risks

While the unorthodox "open-door policy" may work well in the short run, some student express concern about extended safety risks.

"It contradicts the purpose of a security system. Having [the doors] propped open during the night is okay temporarily, but if this continues, it will not be beneficial to the students," Hawes said.

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Nouvel said that actions have been taken to maintain safety during this period of repair.

"We have upscaled our patrol. We have been making tours through the main section of Forbes, especially at night. Patrols have been alerted to shut propped-open doors," he added.

The locked doors will not become a permanent fixture at Forbes. "We are working as fast as possible to install the [Forbes] hardware. It should be completed on time by four o'clock on Friday," Nouvel said.

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