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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Broken Pipe Floods High School

A broken pipe in the cafeteria that caused flooding at River Hill High School this weekend will not force the school to close on Tuesday.

“It’s fortunate that this was a non-student day,” Patti Caplan, director of public information for Howard County schools, said on Monday.

Caplan confirmed that a pipe had broken at the school.

In a statement sent to parents, River Hill principal Nick Novak said the Howard County Fire Department responded to an alarm at River Hill early Sunday.

According to Novak, a check valve froze and the pipe burst in a storage area of the kitchen. Rooms on the first and basement floors of the building were flooded.

A response team of school maintenance staff and a certified inspection, cleaning and restoration company was organized to remove the water and address any damage. No mold was found in the affected areas of the school, Novak said, and the immediate removal of the water and the use of fans and dehumidifiers reduces the potential of mold growth.

Monday was a professional work day for teachers county-wide, so students were not in school. The professional work day was held as scheduled, with teachers either reporting for work at River Hill or other high schools where development activities were scheduled.

Students will return to River Hill as scheduled on Tuesday.
Areas of the school did sustain damage; several classrooms will require the replacement of ceiling tiles and wallboards, Novak said, causing the relocation of some classes to other rooms for the week. The media center will be closed for the rest of the week.

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