Water main break causes school closures

October 3, 2013 • Local News

Berrendo Elementary School was one of four schools closed Thursday, following a water main break, Wednesday night, in the Berrendo Water Co-Op system. (Jill McLaughlin Photo)

Four schools were closed Thursday after a water main burst in the Berrendo Co-Op Water system, leaving more than 1,200 children home for the day.

Administrators made the call to close Berrendo Elementary and Middle schools, East Grand Plains Elementary and Mountain View Middle School [auth] early Thursday morning after maintenance workers determined they would need time to repair the broken pipe, said Assistant Superintendent for Financial Operations Chad Cole.

The break happened after 4 p.m. Wednesday, when construction crews working in the area hit the pipe, according to the co-op. Water was shut off to the schools shortly after.

The co-op serves some 1,550 customers and has two maintenance workers. The workers spent all night repairing the pipe. A split was found and repaired by 11 a.m. Thursday, according to the co-op.

School staff went out to the site to assess the situation at 4 a.m., Cole said. It was determined shortly after that the pipe would need extensive repairs.

The bus contractor was informed to make route adjustments and school principals were called.

“We sent out an auto message to parents, staff and children in those schools,” Cole said.

Many of the houses in the area also were affected.

The district talked to the co-op and was assured the water pressure was restored by Thursday afternoon.

“They said they got the pressure up,” Cole said. “They’re comfortable that they found all the leaks. I’ve sent the maintenance guys out to the all the sites.

“School is back on.”

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