Many residents and businesses across the state are finding they have something in common following the recent deep freeze, busted pipes.
Area school districts weren’t immune to water issues following the arctic front that brought sub-freezing temperatures, snow and ice to most of the state last week.
With temperatures finally rising on Friday, district staff members from Seguin, Navarro and Marion got a glimpse of any damage that occurred, planned to wait to take a hard look on Saturday once all of the snow and ice melted.
“I think it is still too early to make a full determination,” Seguin ISD Superintendent Matthew Gutierrez said Friday morning. “I think it is probably going to be tomorrow before we have a good understanding of where facilities are once things have an opportunity to thaw out.”
Maintenance and custodial staff visited all of the district’s facilities Saturday to seek any issues and clean up any messes, Gutierrez said.
That’s not to say the district hadn’t already identified some issues.
A sprinkler line in the entrance of the Seguin ISD’s Central Office busted, but the leak was caught early enough and cleaned quickly before any damage set in, Gutierrez said.
A water line in a third-floor mechanical room at Seguin High School leaked down to the first floor, but stayed clear of any classrooms.
“There is some drywall damage and we’ll have to have someone come in and make repairs, but it isn’t any thing significant, at least at this point,” Gutierrez said.
Other issues at the campus included a busted pipe on a chiller line, a sprinkler line in Matador Stadium that leaked into the home side men’s restroom and the equipment room, and a water leak in the second-floor press box.
A fire sprinkler in Patlan Elementary’s cafeteria burst, but was quickly caught and fixed, Gutierrez said.
“Our hope is that the issues that we addressed already is the extent of it all, but we truly won’t know until [Saturday],” he said.
Gutierrez credited his maintenance team for checking the facilities daily helping to avoid any major issues.
“I do believe we are ready for students and staff on Monday and we are certainly looking forward to having our kids back,” he said.
Marion ISD’s campuses faired well against the brutal temperatures, only seeing a handful of outside pipes bearing the brunt, Superintendent Kelly Lindholm said.
“We’ve been fairly fortunate,” she said. “We definitely have a number of pipes that burst, but fortunately, they were all exterior pipes. We didn’t have anything occur in a building.”
Much like Seguin ISD, Lindholm’s maintenance crew planned to visit the facilities on Saturday to get a larger picture of any potential damage that was done once the water is restored.
“The plan is to come in tomorrow morning and fix all of the pipes that are broken and get all of the water back up and check on the buildings again,” she said Friday afternoon. “As far as we know, as soon as they are able to do that, we should be good to go Monday. Overall the district fared pretty well. I think we escaped from any major damage in any buildings.”
Navarro ISD Superintendent Wendi Russell said her custodial team was set to enter campuses Friday afternoon to assess any damage. The main issue Navarro faced as of Friday afternoon was lack of water, Russell said.
“Hopefully, they get water to us and we’ll see what’s wrong,” she said.