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Water Floods Basement Music Tech Room

Vicki Zhang and Jami Citko

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On Thursday, March 16, the school’s radiator malfunctioned and water began pouring out, coating the floor in the basement under the auditorium in dark, boiling liquid. The steam from the water rose all the way up to the auditorium, triggering the fire alarm  and causing everyone in the school to have to evacuate.

At first, the leak didn’t seem like a big problem. The music tech class was already in the auditorium because their classroom was too cold to use, and the concert band was setting up as usual.

“We went into M2 to watch our concert, but there was brown liquid coming from the radiator, so Mr. Gnagey told us to go back in the band room,” freshman Claire Doll described. “About 5-10 minutes later, water started coming into the band room and everyone started freaking out and stepping in the water.”

The water didn’t seem as harmless at first, but it quickly began to rise.

“From what I heard last, there were 4 inches of water with mold,” Doll depicted.

Many were worried about their instruments being damaged by the water, which could easily seep through their cases and damage them, especially the string instruments.

“When I heard the basement flooded, I thought my instrument and other’s instruments could be damaged, but when I heard the water was only to the floor, I knew our instruments were fine…I realized some instruments were on the floor, like the tuba, so they can be possibly damaged,” sophomore Eden Beyene recounted.

This wasn’t the only time a problem like this has happened. In February of 2010, a pipe in the music office burst and began to flood the basement, similar to what happened this time. It also happened in 2009 and 2003. In January of 2014, a pipe burst on the second floor and began to flood room 238 during school hours.

All of this issues happen during the winter, and are partially caused by the expansion of the water inside of the pipes. When water freezes it expands, putting pressure on the pipe and causing it to break. Another contributing factor is the age of the equipment accompanied by its excessive use during winter months.

Luckily, no instruments or equipment were severely damaged due to these inconveniences, and hopefully nothing worse than this will happen it the future.

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The Student News Site of Catonsville High School.
Water Floods Basement Music Tech Room