Reports of 'gunshots' at N. Carolina high school turn out to be malfunctioning water heater

Photo: screen grab from WECT live video

PENDER COUNTY, N.C. (WTHR) — Police responded to reports of an active shooter at a North Carolina High School Friday morning, but officials confirmed it was instead a malfunctioning water heater creating sounds that resembled gunfire.

The calls came in from Topsail High School before 7 a.m. Friday.

Area school went on lockdown. By 8:30 a.m., officials had confirmed the gunshot sounds were actually from faulty equipment at the school.

No shots were ever fired and no injuries were reported.

Pender County Commissioner David Williams told WECT he was "sure it was not gunfire." Williams is also a football coach at the gym and said the team has heard the noise during practice all week, but he believed it may be a lasting problem of Hurricane Florence.

"They did exactly the right thing," Williams said of law enforcement's response. "There's no such thing as an over response."

Pender county Emergency Director Tom Collins said the sheriff's office is expected to hold a new conference with updates Friday morning.

This is a breaking story and we will continue to update it as more details become available.

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