UPDATE: Phi Delt Fire Probably Caused By Irresponsible Chimney Use

Picture 1According to tipsters and Darmouthian speculation, the fire that successfully shuttered Phi Delta Alpha last week was caused by a steamy, overheated chimney-pipe… (sexiness not intended). According to Hanover Fire Department Captain Mike Gilbert:

It is possible that heat radiating from a steam pipe inside the chimney ignited the material between the wall and the chimney.

In laymen’s terms, it appears that someone left the fireplace burning all night. Now, nobody should expect thermodynamics to be one of Phi Delt’s specialities, but a little foresight here may have been useful.

Although firefighters covered some of the students’ belongings with tarp, most of their personal property was destroyed…Approximately half of the fraternity members lost their laptops…Most of the Phi Delt members’ textbooks and schoolwork were also destroyed.

Things just keep getting worse for the embattled frat, which rang in the 21st century with an expired lease, and was punished by the Dartmouth administration a couple years back for, um, providing alcohol to pre-frosh. (Wow, Hanover just seems more fun every day. Forced sobriety and infernos!)

Unfortunately, Phi Delta Alpha’s charred, waterlogged doors will be shut until the end of this year, at least. In the interim, the displaced bros will sooth their wounds with “personal and academic counseling” provided by the University, and reap the rewards of Dartmouth-wide clothing drives, free gift cards, Panhellenic Council funds and their “parents’ homeowners insurance.” A worthy cause indeed.

And never fear, they’ll be raging too:

Although Phi Delt members will be unable to enter the building, they plan to partner with other campus organizations to remain active socially, Alekna said. “We will definitely be out there,” he said.

Just don’t let them near your fireplace, hot-plate, or bunsen-burner (or flammable girlfriend).

(Image by Tilman Dette, The Dartmouth Senior Staff)