No gunshots fired at North Carolina high school

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

County commissioners told WECT-TV that the active shooter situation at Topsail High School may have been a malfunctioning water heater.

James Rowell said deputies responded to reports of shots being fired at the school around 6:30 Friday morning.

The high school is in the town of town of Hampstead and part of Pender County, around 177 kilometres southeast of the North Carolina's capital, Raleigh.

"What I'm hearing is that it's a false alarm".

The sheriff's spokesman said law enforcement officers were still searching the campus as a precaution but preliminary reports indicate that it was faulty equipment. "In this climate, you have to take it seriously", Brown said.

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Pender County schools posted on Twitter that all campuses on the eastern side of the county are on lockdown.

Topsail High School, Topsail Middle School, and Topsail Elementary School were all put on lockdown.

"Pender County Schools is thankful everyone is safe and thanks local emergency services for its immediate response", school officials tweeted.

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

In May, an 18-year-old student was found in the school's parking lot with a large knife strapped to his leg and three other knives.

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