FARGO - Police are sweeping the North Dakota State University campus after a campus-wide evacuation was ordered this morning due to a bomb threat.
The evacuation order called for people to leave all NDSU properties by 10:15 a.m. The evacuation caused heavy traffic in the area, as students and others scrambled to get off school property.
"I've never been under that pressure before," said Alexa Corrow, a freshman who was packing to go home to Hutchinson, Minn., when she got word of the evacuation.
One group of students in a car said they had spent 30 minutes in a traffic jam in the parking lot trying to get out.
Police Lt. Joel Vettel and NDSU President Dean Bresciani held a news conference at 10:45 a.m. They said the threat was made against the university in general without specifics, which is why all NDSU property was evacuated.
Bresciani told The Associated Press that the main campus was evacuated, along with the school's downtown campus and its agricultural facilities. He says it's difficult to evacuate 20,000 people immediately, but most of the evacuation happened within a matter of minutes.
Vettel said police have been in contact with official in Austin, Texas, where the University of Texas also received a bomb threat this morning, but there was no information connecting the two incidents.
This alert was posted at 9:49 a.m. on NDSU's website:
"NDSU is requiring all employees and students to leave campus by 10:15 a.m. This includes residence hall students, who, if necessary, should walk to locations off campus. This also includes the downtown buildings and agricultural facilities.
NDSU received a bomb threat, prompting this evacuation. Updates will follow.
Do not call local emergency numbers for further information in order to permit emergency lines to remain open for emergency calls. Updates to this announcement will be made when information becomes available. This message is authorized and transmitted by the University Police Communications Call Center."
Two other bomb threats were reported this week in the region. One closed access to Hector International Airport in Fargo and another was reported at the Grand Forks airport.
Check back for more details on this developing story.