Newport’s Richards Elementary School to Remain Closed Wednesday
Newport — Richards Elementary School will remain closed for a third day tomorrow as cleanup and repairs continue following Sunday’s broken sprinkler pipe that caused extensive damage in the school’s older section.
SAU 43 Business Manager Chuck Stuart said the damaged fire alarm system is what is preventing them from holding classes.
“It got drenched and has to be replaced. It is all electronic so once water hit it, it was toast,” Stuart said.
Stuart said the company installing the new system is in the process of gathering the required parts from various suppliers.
“We are hopeful we can open Thursday,” Stuart said.
The pipe broke in a third floor special education classroom around 2:15 p.m. Sunday and although the water was shut off in about 10 minutes, the volume that poured out of the two inch pipe in the short period of time flooded three floors, including the library, which sits below the room where the pipe broke.
Most of the affected area is office space, not classrooms. The fire alarm panel sits right outside the main office. Stuart said the cleanup and drying out is continuing and is far enough along to reopen but the fire alarm system must be fixed and permission to reopen given by the fire chief.