During the weekend of July 4th, teachers are just getting their summers started after finishing up finalizing grades and organizing classrooms. Many are headed off to watch fireworks, enjoy cookouts, and spend time with family. This past 4th of July, teachers were unsuspecting of the damage being done at Walpole High School as they enjoyed the start of their summer.
A faucet in Ms. Laura Walleston’s room, one situated at the very end of the science wing of the high school, had accidentally been turned on by a stack of books that fell over. The books not only turned the faucet on, but also fell into the sink—clogging the drain and causing gallons upon gallons of water to spill over into Walleston’s room. The damage was not discovered until after the weekend, when some of the custodial staff finally turned the water off.
Walleston said, “I was shocked when Mr. Imbusch called me over the summer to tell me about the flooded sink. Then, obviously, I felt incredibly bad if it had been, in any way, my fault, especially since my room received the least damage.” The water ultimately flooded Walleston’s room before running through the ceiling into the computer lab on the first floor and then down into room A246 in the basement. The damage left behind was extensive, as both the ceiling in the computer lab and the ceiling in A246 collapsed, along with causing damage to four different computers. Additionally, some baseboards in Walleston’s room needed replacing along with the carpet in room A246.
The damage ultimately cost the school thousands in cleaning, replacing school electronics, and replacing the health room carpet. Insurance covered the majority of the cost, which totaled $16,031.31. Despite the damage, the rooms were repaired and put back to normal, going unnoticed by the students at the start of the 2013-2014 school year.