Faculty Back in their offices after the “flood”

The displaced teachers of the Humanities Division have all returned safe and sound to their regular offices since the “flooding” of the Humanities building brought faculty offices into chaos.

“Everyone’s moved back in” Dr. Barbra Jaffe, Associate Dean of Humanities sai, “Property  damages are slowly being replaced, but not everything has or will be.

The “flooding”, if you could even call it that, was noticed at 4:42 a.m. and on September 30, 2010 of Fall semester, and occurred when a coupling on a pipe failed in room 221A of the second floor of the humanities building, and began spewing water all within the offices of the second floor and leaked down into all but 4 offices of the first floor. The water turned off at 5:10 am by Bruce Hoerning, Assistant Director of Facilities.

“Water that goes from the central plant to the buildings began leaking after the fitting failed” Hoerning said, “The water levels themselves were only half an inch high, though many thought it was 12 inches. But it’s a normal procedure to cut away 12 inches of drywall wherever there is water on the floor, as a precaution to prevent mold.”

Many faculty feared that there was something toxic in the water or the air, but tests of the water and air quality proved these scares to be nothing more but rumors.

While a majority of the teachers were moved to different locations, including the Manhattan Beach Modules, The Communications building, and even the writing center,  a lot of teachers were mainly moved up to the third floor, squished like sardines alongside the other teachers offices.

“It was very crowded, people were moved everywhere throughout the semester” Professor Mimi Ansite said, who teaches English A, 1A and several academic strategies classes “We just tried to make the best of it. Some personal property was ruined, and phone lines and computer cables got wet making it hard to contact students.  It shouldn’t have happened, but we just had to put up with it.”

Professor Darrel Thompson, is located in an office on the third floor, along with his office mate professor Bruce Peppard, and was one of the many teachers who shared occupancy with teachers from the damaged offices.

“We had to “adopt” office mates, so instructors from the second floor would come up here and conduct business during their office hours” Thompson said, “there were 3 of us in here, so it got pretty crowded, but we were glad to help.”

Teachers were allowed to start moving back sometime in early January, right before Spring classes were about to start.

“It’s unfortunate that this had to happen to the faculty” said Betty Park, Marine Biology major “but its good to know that everything is back to normal.”

The insurance that Dr. Jaffe had mentioned isn’t covering all of the damages, although a large portion went into replacing the couplings on every level, new carpet, new paint, new ceiling tiles, and new furniture to make. Total costs on repairs could not be disclosed.

The office where the coupling failed, room 221 A, was originally the office of Professor Susan Corbin, and fortunately she had not been there when the pipe burst in her ceiling. The room is now being used for storage, and she is now office mates with Professor Inna Newbury.

Is there a chance that a part could fail again? There’s always a chance” Hoerning said “We have water breakage sometimes, It’s bound to happen. Things break, but we try to get them fixed as soon as possible.”