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Classes to resume Wednesday at Greens Farms School

Updated 4:22 pm, Tuesday, January 7, 2014
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Classes are scheduled to resume Wednesday at Greens Farms Elementary School. The school was closed two days after a fire sprinkler pipe burst early Monday, causing damage that needed major repairs.

"The pipe that controls sprinklers at Greens Farms froze up and burst, causing extensive damage to one major wing," Superintendent of Schools Elliot Landon told Board of Education members during a Monday night meeting.

He said a motion detector in the building alerted officials around 2 a.m. Monday that there was some type of incident had occurred.

He said firefighters managed to shut off the water early Monday, but by that time, the damage was done.

"We don't know how it happened," he told the school board.

Fire Marshal Edward Zygmant said water from the burst pipe "flowed for a period of time" in the front section of the building before firefighters arrived to turn it off.

"Extensive work is needed," Landon said of the repairs, adding walls, ceilings and ceiling tiles all had to be removed. "There's lots of work to be done," he said.

Classes were cancelled both Monday and Tuesday because officials did not want students in the building while repair work was being done.

The Republican Town Committee Tuesday announced that a caucus to select new members -- scheduled to take place at the school Wednesday as part of the GOP's townwide causes -- will, instead, take place at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday in Town Hall.

The school's sprinkler was just one of the casualties caused by this week's cold snap.

"We have been running all over town," Zygmant said Monday afternoon about the high volume of calls the Fire Department received for emergency assistance with broken water pipes.

Besides Greens Farms School, firefighters also were dispatched to handle weather-related problems at the Birchwood County Club as well as homes on Charles Street, Riverside Avenue, Post Road West and Wilton Road, to name a few, Zygmant said.

Firefighters assisted in getting the water turned off at those locations.

"It's not getting any better, but it's not the worst we've seen," he said, adding such problems routinely arise "when the temperature dips the way it does."