North Carolina officials say no active shooter, was malfunctioning water heater

The Topsail High School campus in Hampstead is shut down and all other schools in eastern Pender County are on lockdown

He said the call said buses are being staged at Lowe's Food across from the schools.

Deputies did find an HVAC unit that was malfunctioning and making sounds similar to gunshots.

Pender County Schools confirmed the reports of the shooter and said the district is "taking all precautions to ensure the safety of students and staff".

Pender County Schools said in a statement, "There has been a reported active shooter situation at Topsail high School. Law enforcement responded immediately and it has been determined there is no shooter and no weapon".

There were no injuries as of 7:03 a.m., Pender County Sheriff's Capt. James Rowell told WWAY.

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Collins told Starnewsonline.com that popping noises heard at Topsail High School early Friday were from a "malfunctioning water heater".

The county school system notified parents of a reported active shooter in a tweet.

According to the school website, school begins at 8:30 a.m.

The school is located near the coast in Hampstead, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) north of Wilmington. A 16-year-old boy who authorities say armed himself with a semi-automatic rifle after hearing about that potential attack also was arrested.

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