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Monday, January 16, 2012

Pipe Burst Floods Library

Although closed for Martin Luther King Day, Fletcher Free Library in Burlington is busy with crews working to stem water damage from an attic plumbing break Sunday morning.

City officials said the library would open as usual Tuesday at 8:30 a.m. -- but it is likely that some sections will remain off-limits to patrons.

Library Co-Director Robert Resnik said a substantial portion of the children's collection, located in the older portion of the library, suffered from the incident.

"Between one and two thousand books got really soaked; a lot of water was released over a short period of time," he said.

Resnik said until more is known about the extent of the damage, it would be impossible to estimate its cost.

Library workers, arriving early for a Sunday shift, noticed the water about 8:30 a.m., and began moving vulnerable books away from the walls and spreading tarps, he added. The irreplaceable local history section was spared.

"This could have been much, much worse," Resnik said.

Director of Public Works Steven Goodkind said a water pipe associated with the building's heating system broke in the attic space above Resnik's office, sending sheets of water through and along the building's inner walls. The precise cause of the break is being studied, he added.

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