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Library Evacuated After Smelly Fruit Mistaken For Gas Leak

More than 500 people were evacuated after reports of a gas leak -- but it turned out to be fruit in a bin.

The University of Canberra library sent out an alert on Friday, warning that an evacuation was underway because of a suspected gas leak.

"About 550 people left the building in under six minutes," the university reported.

But while the evacuation seemed to go off without a hitch, there was one sticking point.

There was no gas leak.

The university made light of the durian incident on Facebook.

"Fortunately the suspected gas leak turned out to be a part of a durian," the university continued.

"The offending fruit has now been removed."

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Durians are commonly referred to as "the smelliest fruit in the world". It is popular and widely-grown in south-east Asia, including Thailand, Malaysia and Vietnam, where some call it the "king of fruits". Its thick, spiky rind protects a soft and fleshy inner -- and an infamous smell.

Opinions are split on the fruit. Some say it has a pleasant and sweet odour, while others have compared the smell to rotten onions or sewage.

"Someone left a durian fruit in one of our bins," the university library added later on Friday, saying it had caused a "lingering gas-like smell in the building."

The library later made light of the incident, posting a photo on Facebook joking that it was a durian-free zone.

"It was in a bin near a air vent on level B, very sneaky," the library wrote in response to a question about the incident.

A similar incident occurred at RMIT university in Melbourne last year, when 500 people were rushed from a building over fears of a gas leak -- which, again, turned out to be the infamous fruit.