Flooding in West Hall

Allison Wordes-Staff Writer

On Feb. 7, a small flood in room 116 revived a dreary Tuesday in West Hall.

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Tara Andersen during the flooding.

At 4:45 p.m., a pipe broke underneath the bathroom sink. Gallons of water poured out and spread onto the carpet. The sound of running water filled the hallway and the puddle grew at an alarming rate. Residents of the room across the hallway barricaded their doorway with towels.

“It was a cleansing experience,” said Tara Andersen, a resident of the affected room.

Andersen and her roommates kept dish soap under the sink and soap suds swirled around the floor with the rising tide.

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Roommates Tara Andersen, Eunbi Go, & Hannah Veldhuisen

It was shortly before 5 p.m. when she heard running water coming from the bathroom that roommate Eunbi Go had just entered. By the time she investigated, only 15 seconds later, an inch of water covered the floor.

Water gushed from the cupboard under the sink.

I can’t fix this, was Andersen’s first thought. Immediately, she ran down the hall in search of RA Abbie White. At first, White thought Andersen was joking. After putting on her rain boots and dialing up the maintenance office, White waded into room 116.

Water continued to fill the room and flood out into the hallway. A crowd gathered nearby, many of the ladies dressed for the etiquette dinner trying not to get their feet wet.

Two maintenance crew members responded in just a few minutes and stopped the flow of water. They departed and returned shortly, bringing proper cleaning equipment and several fans to suck the moisture away. Jalyn Vander Wal, another RA, took action by finding a heavy duty vacuum to remove excess water from the carpet.

Andersen stood in their doorway in her yellow rain boots thinking, ‘I will turn this into an adventure.’ She admitted the event was not completely stress-free as she felt concern for the state of the room.

Roommate Hannah Veldhuisen, practicing with the track team at the time of the leak, returned to her room later that evening. Finding the furniture out in the hallway surprised her a little. Hearing the fans going disconcerted her the most.

Following the receding waters, the tenants of the soggy room decided to have a little fun by putting out a call for help. They labeled a box with “#WestHall116Flood” and placed it outside their door, asking for small donations.

“I was inspired by relief efforts for people affected by natural disasters,” Andersen said.

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Room 116 collecting donations after the flood.

The maintenance crew said that last time the guys in East Hall had a flooding incident, they broke out the beach balls and had a pool party. The men from maintenance remarked that men’s dorms tend to not respond as quickly in reporting water damage.
Room 116 is now back to normal – and their carpet has a new, pleasant odor.

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