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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Pipe Burst Floods Superior Court

BRENTWOOD – Rockingham County Superior Court was evacuated shortly before noon after a pipe burst, soaked parts of the third floor and poured down through the lower floors.

The Brentwood Fire Department was called to the courthouse, located along Route 125, shortly before noon.

Deputy Fire Chief Joseph Bird said a pipe broke close to where a maintenance crew was doing work in the building.

The leak was near an elevator used to transport prisoners toward the back of the courthouse and poured through internal sections of the building.

He said crews stopped the leak and assessed whether the water damage was seeping into the building's electrical system before turning the building back over to court officials.

"The decision to reopen is up to them," Bird said. "The leak is under control and now they're trying to salvage what they can."

Bird said water dampened some areas near the electrical system but did not pose any danger.

One trial was underway in courtroom 6 when the pipe gave way. That case was cancelled at least until Friday.

Several probation violation hearings scheduled for 1 p.m. were also cancelled.

Court security officers spent the lunch hour turning away lawyers and people coming either to court or the registry of deeds office located on the basement floor of the building.

They remained posted at the front of the building Thursday afternoon to tell jurors returning from lunch that the courthouse was closed for the rest of the day.

The fire department remained on the scene for about an hour.

Court officials are still assessing the damage and may not determine until Friday morning when the building will reopen.

Burst pipe causes flooding, evacuation during trial at county courthouse

BRENTWOOD – A burst water pipe caused the flooding, evacuation and closure of the Rockingham County Superior Court Thursday.

Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams said a “major” water pipe burst on the third floor of the court at about noon Thursday when water flooded down to the basement level for a half hour before it was shut off. Fire alarms were pulled to evacuate the building and about 100 people stood in the parking lot before the court was declared closed for the day, he said.

Most of the damage, said Reams, occurred in the court clerk's office where records are kept in paper, not electronic, format.

“There was a lot of water,” he said.

The county attorney said damage to his office and the registry of deeds was not as bad as in the clerk's office. A cleaning crew is expected to work through the night and the court will reopen Friday, Reams said.

At the time the pipe burst, a trial was under way for Craig O'Brien, 48, of Eliot, Maine, for a charge alleging he threatened a witness at Portsmouth District Court. Reams said the trial was expected to resume Friday.

O'Brien is alleged to have threatened a witness in a District Court hallway on August 17, 2010 when he was there for trial on two counts of disorderly conduct. O'Brien has been charged multiple times locally for his behavior while jogging. He is also barred by the District Court from coming to Portsmouth, but is appealing that ban to the state Supreme Court.

Pipe Burst Floods Harvad Faculty Club

A burst pipe sent water spewing over the dark-stained wood of the Harvard Faculty Club yesterday, forcing residents to evacuate the building and leaving the club’s elegant carpeting covered in an orange tarp.

The burst occurred at approximately 3:50 p.m and caused the fire alarm to be set off, according to Crista Martin, the director for marketing and communications for Harvard University Hospitality and Dining Services.

The Cambridge Fire Department and building restoration workers arrived soon after to assess the situation.

“It just started leaking from the third floor, but it’s too early to tell what the damage will be,” said Gary K. Kassabian, the director of emergency services at Harvard.

Employees and guests were evacuated from the building, located at 20 Quincy St., after the fire alarm sounded. Employees were informed that the situation was not a fire, but instead a pipe burst.

Carolina Fonrodona, banquet manager at the Faculty Club, waited by the door while the building was undergoing its initial assessment.

“The only thing we know is that a pipe broke from cold water in the mechanical room. It’s just water damage, but we’re not sure how much,” Fonrodona said.

The building shut down last night as managers continue to assess the damage. Several events scheduled for the night were cancelled. Guests who had been staying in the bedrooms were given other accommodations, according to Martin.

County Office Set To Reopen

Work to clean up and repair flood damage caused by a broken water main at the Montgomery County Human Services Center should be complete in about a month.

Tom Brennan, the county’s risk management coordinator, estimated the cost of the cleanup and repair thus far to be more than $800,000, with insurance covering all but $100,000 of the damage.

The 8-inch-diameter water main began leaking early Feb. 11, inundating the first floor with water and mud and preventing offices from opening that day. The flood displaced some county departments, including the Coroner’s Office.

Dozens of those employees continue to work at satellite offices in Pottstown and Willow Grove until work at the 1430 DeKalb St. facility is completed.

The coroner’s operations relocated to the Emergency Operations Center in Eagleville, where the office occupies space in five garage bays.

The broken pipe has been replaced and was successfully tested this week, and the auxiliary water line that had been serving the building was shut off, according to the risk management official.

A prompt emergency response after the flooding was discovered around 3:30 a.m. saved the offices from more extensive damage, including mold.

Library Reopens After Open Pipe Flooding

The public can check out the Butte Public Library Saturday as it reopens after under-going four months of repairs following water damage from a ruptured pipe.

Director Lee Phillips and her staff were busy Thursday preparing the facility for Saturday’s “grand reopening.”

“There’s just a few things to tune up, but we’re ready to go,” Phillips told The Montana Standard.

The library has been out of commission since Nov. 29, when a major water pipe broke, flooding a good portion of the building. The water damaged carpeting, drywall and just over 100 books.

Phillips estimated the cleanup and repair costs at between $250,00 and $350,000 — paid by the county’s insurance.

She said it has been a challenging four months.

“Once we get people in the building and it’s being used again, that will be the greatest satisfaction,” Phillips said.

The library’s main branch has approximately 70,000 books. With a grant, the library recently purchased 10 new desktop computers, 20 laptop computers and two touch-screen computers. Hours on Friday are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The library opened its South Branch in December at the Butte Plaza Mall. Mall management donated six months of space rent free. Phillips said she plans to poll the public to see if they want it to remain open once the lease ends on June 30.

“We have to decide if it’s wanted and if we can afford the space,” she said.

Sheriff's Office Suffers Water Damage

MEDINA — April Fools’ Day was not so funny for Medina County Sheriff’s Office employees Friday morning when water damage was discovered on the facility’s ceilings.

Chief Deputy Ken Baca said about 40 percent of the ceilings at the sheriff’s office have received moisture damage over the past few months. A large part of that occurred late Thursday, as moisture seeped through the roof of the building following a snowy Wednesday, he said.

“It’s throughout the whole building,” Baca said. “Our jail administrative office was really hit with the latest dose.”

Water is visible in light fixtures and ceiling tile in the sheriff’s office kitchen area, offices of detectives and the jail administration office. There are also scattered stains along carpet and floor tiles in parts of the building, Baca said.

The sheriff’s office opened July 1996, and the roof is guaranteed by the building contractor for at least 20 years, Baca said.

He noted the contractor for the sheriff’s office was scheduled to visit the facility from Florida to inspect the water damage Friday.

Baca did not have a repair estimate Friday.

4/6/11 Lindenhurst Weather Forecast

Tonight: Rain. Low around 39. North wind between 5 and 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.

Thursday: A chance of rain, mainly before noon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 49. East wind between 7 and 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Thursday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 38. Southeast wind between 4 and 7 mph becoming calm.

Friday: A slight chance of rain after noon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 53. Northeast wind 6 to 11 mph becoming south. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

Friday Night: A chance of rain, mainly after midnight. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 38. South wind between 3 and 7 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

Saturday: Partly sunny, with a high near 54.

Saturday Night: Mostly cloudy, with a low around 42.

Sunday: Partly sunny, with a high near 60.

Sunday Night: A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 49. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Monday: A chance of rain. Cloudy, with a high near 68. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Monday Night: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy and breezy, with a low around 52. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Tuesday: Partly sunny, with a high near 62.

Tuesday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 41.

Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 62.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Burst Pipe Closes Brentwood Court

A leak in a water pipe canceled afternoon proceedings at Rockingham Superior Court yesterday, but court will be open for business as usual this morning.

The courthouse, which also houses Brentwood Family Division, Rockingham Probate, Exeter District Court and the Registry of Deeds, was evacuated and closed for the day after a pipe broke about 12:15 p.m., Brentwood Fire Deputy Joseph Bird said.

The water came from the third floor of the building, in an area that includes prisoner holding cells and offices for judges, Bird said.

"Being on the third floor, it soaked everything between there and the bottom," Bird said.

Judicial branch spokeswoman Laura Kiernan said the pipe was damaged during maintenance.

"During a routine maintenance call, a fitting broke on a pipe in the prisoner area of the courthouse," she said.

While some offices and hallways were flooded, the damage was largely contained to an area not used by the public, Bird said.

"It was probably in one of the better places to have it happen," he said.

Woman Struggles With Flooded Basement

An Ajax woman is livid after her basement flooded due to seeping water and she blames work on an empty lot behind her home for the damage.

Adriana Guirguis has lived on Locker Drive for more than 20 years. Behind her home sits an empty lot fronting Magill Drive which is slated for eight homes to be built by Beachview Homes. She says the developer began excavating last summer.

Ms. Guirguis said as the snow melted, water from the site caused flood damage to her home which she first noticed on March 8.

"I went to the basement to pick up a bottle of rum and bent my knees to the carpet and they were wet," said Ms. Guirguis. "By an hour or so, over two shop vacs were full, by that time I was concerned."

She found out the next day that one of her neighbours was also experiencing flooding. At the peak, she had an inch and a half of water in her basement, damaging carpets, laminate and her walls and causing the growth of mould and mildew, she said.

Burst Pipe Damages School Building

Contractors are assessing damages after a burst water pipe inside the new Lake Washington High School building leaked water for at least two days on the weekend of March 19-20.

Kathryn Reith, communications director for the Lake Washington School District, said contractors discovered the leakage the following Monday on March 21.

"A pipe leading to an eyewash station burst, leading to the water leakage," said Reith, noting the incident happened in a science room. "The contractor has been working to remedy any problems."

She said the extent of damages is currently unknown.

Kirkland resident Jeff Ridley noticed "water running out of a second floor window" at the school on March 19.

"I tried calling the contractor, but nobody was on-call for emergency situations," said Ridley. "Sunday the water was still running out the window and the windows were wet on the inside. Monday I noticed an army of vehicles on-site working on a water-damage situation."

He added a 24-hour emergency contact posted at the job site may have saved crews "a fair amount of damage."

Small Fire In Iowa City Causes Minor Damage

A downtown Iowa City business sustained an estimated $5,000 in damage Monday after a small fire, Iowa City Fire Department officials said.

There were no injuries in the incident.

The Iowa City Fire Department responded to reports of smoke outside the building at 121 E. College St., on the pedestrian mall in downtown Iowa City.

First-in crews encountered light smoke in both The Union bar, at 121 E. College, and The Soap Opera, at 119 E. College St. The apartments above both buildings were evacuated while fire crews searched for the fire.

The fire was located in an overhang on the front of The Soap Opera. Crews spent two to three hours doing overhaul and extinguishing small fires in the overhang, according to fire officials.

Mutual aid was received from Solon, North Liberty, Tiffin and Hills fire departments. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Occupants were allowed to return to their apartments after the fire was extinguished.

School To Remain Open

Center Grove High School will reopen today after a broken water pipe flooded classrooms and caused classes to be canceled Thursday.

Still to be decided is whether the school will need to schedule an additional class day to make up for Thursday's lost time.
All of the school's scheduled makeup days already have been scheduled to compensate for time lost to snow and ice last month, and one extra class day already had been added, said Assistant Superintendent Bill Long.

A 3-inch water pipe broke early Thursday, flooding a nurse's office, guidance office and several classrooms at the school, 2717 S. Morgantown Road. Administrators had hoped to start classes two hours late, but all classes were called off.

The water line that broke was inside the school, and a repair crew had to dig underneath the building to make repairs.

Long said the school will ask for a waiver from the Indiana Department of Education so it is not required to have another day of classes to make up for the lost time.

School districts are required to have 180 class days each school year and must make up for time lost to weather and other emergencies.

4/5/11 Lindenhurst Weather Forecast

Late Afternoon: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 52. Breezy, with a west wind around 21 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Tonight: A chance of showers, mainly before 7pm. Mostly cloudy during the early evening, then gradual clearing, with a low around 33. West wind between 13 and 18 mph, with gusts as high as 28 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

Wednesday: A slight chance of rain before noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 52. West wind between 11 and 18 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

Wednesday Night: A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 40. West wind between 8 and 11 mph becoming calm. Chance of precipitation is 50%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Thursday: A chance of rain. Cloudy, with a high near 50. East wind between 5 and 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Thursday Night: A slight chance of rain after midnight. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 39. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

Friday: A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 47. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Friday Night: A chance of rain. Cloudy, with a low around 36. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Saturday: A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 50. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

Saturday Night: Mostly cloudy, with a low around 40.

Sunday: Partly sunny, with a high near 54.

Sunday Night: A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 47. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Monday: A chance of rain. Cloudy, with a high near 61. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Monday Night: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 47. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Tuesday: Mostly sunny and breezy, with a high near 62.