WRITTEN BY: LILA GORDON
On Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day, the residents of 1940 were woken at 9 a.m. to evacuate the premises.
A pipe had burst, leaving a strong mildew smell throughout the building for three days, 1940 resident Jack Oatts said.
“A pipe burst near the top of 1940 residence hall due to the extremely low temperatures,” Brandon Lausch, Temple spokesman, said. “Water leaks affected most of the building, so the 475 students who live there were temporarily relocated to Tomlinson Theater.”
The assistant director of marketing communications at Tomlinson Theater, Caehlin Bell, was scheduled to be the box office support for the performance of Two Gentlemen of Verona, that same Sunday at 2:00 p.m.
“There was a little bit of confusion, obviously,” Bell said. “So when I arrived at 1:00 p.m. there were about a hundred students in the theater and in the lobbies. They were allowed into the dorms four by four to retrieve essential items.”
Considering the upcoming show, the Tomlinson Theater staff decided to move these residents to the Annenberg Atrium, where they remained until around 5:45 p.m.
“We all got evacuated nice and early – it was annoying,” said Tyler Rzucidlo, resident of the first floor of 1940. “Lots of flooding, lots of mayhem. We were locked out for like nine hours.”
Rzucildo’s belongings were not personally affected by the flooding, although ground floor resident Harsh Khana’s shoes and suitcase were, he said.
“The director spoke to us and he was really helpful,” Khana said. “People cleaned our whole room.” Khana expects to be compensated for his damaged belongings.
“The RA sent out an email and told us to close our windows and move our stuff to higher levels,” Khana said. “It’s not like we were not aware that this could possibly happen.”
Because Khana and his roommates’ room was G11, which was along the column of rooms that was severely affected by the pipe, they were given housing at the Conwell Inn for the night, Khana said.
Lausch said students dealt with the issue very well.
“[It’s] not like someone personally did it,” Rzucidlo said. “It definitely could have been handled more swiftly – a pipe burst, it’s not that hard to change out a pipe. I work construction back home.”