WESTWOOD—The Los Angeles Fire Department confirmed earlier this week that there were no survivors of the massive fire that broke loose in Boelter Hall.
“It was a complete massacre, really,” fire marshal Edward Robeson said during the morning press conference. “We got there within five minutes of the fire alarms going off, but immediately realized something was wrong. No one was exiting the building.”
Structural engineer Ray Chu provided a detailed analysis of the disaster and the prevailing cause of death. “Boelter, like all buildings, has fire exits. However, no one really has any fucking idea where these fire exits are. Or where the stairs are. Or the elevators. Or really, where anything is.” Pointing to the blueprints, he indicated an area on the second floor where a mass of charred skeletons has been found. “This is a room of dubious importance, recorded as the steampipe distribution center. We suspect it was more likely a dungeon, and with no visible entrance or exit, we are completely at a loss as to how so many people entered and died there.”
According to Robeson, the source of the fire was a machine being developed by graduate engineering students. “This machine was a tool designed to detect fires from distances of up to seven hundred miles,” UCLA Mechanical Engineering professor Maslavos Milovesec said. “Unfortunately, it was not designed to detect fires that started inside its own body and spontaneously exploded.” Milovesec was not on campus at the time of the fire, leaving him as one of the few surviving engineering faculty at UCLA.
Another bottleneck of bodies was found on the roof, which can only be accessed by the elevator and that really shady set of stairs that no one really knows about unless they’re into weird sex. Milovesec claimed he never attended any of his classes on the roof, believing it to be haunted. “I think a lot of graduate students were sacrificed to the Nobel Prize committee up there, so I never went to my Fluid Mechanics class there. The TAs just taught the whole thing and mysteriously disappeared every quarter. I never questioned it.” The roof was filled with hundreds of charred corpses and also appeared to be the source of the bodies found on the ground outside Boelter.
Robeson stated that he instructed his men to enter the burning building, rescue the students, and exit the building, in slow motion if possible. “But the weirdest thing happened. A few minutes inside, and they all started radioing me telling me they had no idea where they were. One turned up in Engineering IV, another in Young Hall, and one guy showed up in Hollywood. The rest burned to a crisp.” Judging this strategy too dangerous, fire helicopters were called in and the building was thoroughly hosed from the outside before another team of firefighters entered through the Math Sciences building.
After sixteen hours, they were finally able to end the fire, tracking the last flames to a screaming girl in the chemical process lab. “Yeah, we got it. Not the girl, she’s dead. But we got the fire. So, I guess we did okay.” Robeson also defended himself and went on to say that the loss of life was not due to his incompetence, but rather the “godawful fucking prick who designed this fucking travesty of a building.”
A memorial service for the victimswill be held this weekend, Milovesec stated. “I mean, we were going to have a memorial for all the poor graduate students who died of caffeine overdoses, so we decided, why not bundle it all together?” Despite the tragedy, Milovesec remains optimistic for the future. “I figure we’d probably lose those students to failure or asceticism anyway, so it’s really breaking even for us.”
Surviving engineering students appear to be taking the disaster in stride, however, and are not letting it affect their studies. “Hey man, this could really help the grade curve,” second year Joseph Deng said to reporters, while scouring the ashes of Boelter for past examinations.