Archive for Thursday, January 6, 2005

High school wrestling with water-damage

January 6, 2005

A broken water main pipe at Lansing High School caused enough damage during the holiday break that three classrooms had to be retiled and the gymnasium has been put out of commission for interscholastic sporting events.

LHS principal Steve Dike said the pipe break over the winter break left more than an inch of water on the gym floor and ruined the carpet in three classrooms at the school.

"The maintenance staff did an outstanding job getting the carpet removed and the rooms retiled, so we were able to get kids right back into the classroom," Dike said. "On top of that we had some water in the office, and they did a lot of carpet maintenance and shampooing. The fact we had a quick reaction time for it was a blessing."

Blowers helped dry the gym floor after the flood.

Blowers helped dry the gym floor after the flood.

The classrooms were back in working order when classes resumed Tuesday morning. The gym was deemed safe enough to conduct physical education classes, Dike said.

"We were very concerned about what to do there," Dike said about using the gym. "As of right now the gym looks like it's in a usable state to have a PE class and do running and generic activities."

School officials decided the gym wasn't safe enough to continue holding varsity sporting events, though. Water seeped under the floor during the flooding and caused a few spots to bubble up. Some of those are on the playing area itself, while others are in positions that prevent the bleachers from fully extending to handle a crowd, said activities director Gary Mattingly.

Instead, all varsity home contests have been relocated to Lansing Intermediate School. Game times will remain the same. Venues for the junior varsity and freshman games still are being arranged.

The wrestling meet slated for 5:30 p.m. today has been moved to Lansing Middle School.

Change of venue

Various Lansing High School activities were forced to change locations after a water pipe broke in the school and caused damage during winter break. Here are events that have been moved so far:

¢ All home varsity basketball games will be played at Lansing Intermediate School for the rest of the season.

¢ The Winter Royalty ceremony and pep rally will be held at 5 p.m. Jan. 14 at Lansing Intermediate School.

¢ The winter dance will be held Jan. 15 at Lansing Intermediate School's gymnasium.

¢ The Jan. 20 wrestling meet will be at Lansing Intermediate School.

¢ The Feb. 3 wrestling meet will be at a to-be-determined location.

¢ The freshman boys' basketball tournament is still being rescheduled.

The winter royalty pep rally and court announcement scheduled for Jan. 14 have been moved to the intermediate school as well. It will take place at 5 p.m. before the varsity basketball games against Bonner Springs. The dance will take place on the Jan. 15 in the Intermediate School gym.

Mattingly said the gym may be used for practices "for now, anyway," but that could change if court conditions get worse.

The school's insurance company paid for 30 blowers to be brought in last weekend to try to dry the floor and lower any raised portions of the court The blowers were removed Monday morning after the court showed improvement in some locations, although the floor has bubbled up in other places since then.

Dike said the district's insurance company will monitor the floor for 30 days to see if it settles down or needs to be replaced.

"The insurance company was here (Tuesday) and their response was that they are going to monitor the humidity under the floor," Dike said. "They'll be back in 30 days to check and, I'm assuming, make that decision."

Although the LHS wrestling team will have to move a few of its home matches, the boys' and girls' basketball teams have been hit the hardest by the problems with the gym floor. They already have been practicing at the middle and intermediate schools throughout the week, but now they must accept the fact that they won't have a true "home" game the rest of the season.

"Obviously you want to be on your own floor," LHS boys' basketball coach Don Allen said. "The good thing is we do practice at the other facilities so we're familiar with them. Is it an inconvenience? Yeah, of course it is. But it's out of our hands and we've got to deal with it.

"Either way, we're going to play. We're not real picky about where we play."

This isn't the first time a broken pipe has caused damage at LHS. A pipe in a similar part of the building burst last winter and damaged a handful of classrooms, Dike said. He said he didn't anticipate another break happening any time soon, though.

"Eventually you being to wonder why we keep having those kinds of issues, but I think we have a long-term solution for it now," Dike said. "That water main was feeding an area of the building that deals with the fire hoses in the gymnasium, and we have been allowed to look at alternatives and we've been able to cap that water main off. That main in the building is not carrying water any more."

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