Pipe damage closes Alcona schools | News, Sports, Jobs

News photo by Temi Fadayomi Alcona Community Schools, seen here on Sunday, will remain closed for unplanned pipe repairs during the first week of January. School operations are expected to resume on January 8th.

LINCOLN – Alcona Community Schools students will get a one-week extension to their winter break as the district remains closed until Jan. 8 following the discovery of pipe damage, according to Alcona Superintendent Dan O’Connor.

O’Connor said the delay was the result of a problem that occurred during a pipe repair on Dec. 22. Upon inspecting the pipe, contractors discovered that the damage was more severe than originally estimated. O’Connor said the district will need to bring in additional specialists to assess and evaluate the pipe.

The contractors “found that there were more damaged areas, so they had to bring in a cleanup specialist and hire certified contractors to work near those areas,” O’Connor said. “So we have to wait until we find a solution to the water on the building again.”

O’Connor said the damage was primarily a result of the age of the pipe.

“We had to wait until the students left to turn off the water,” O’Connor said. “When you’re dealing with over-60 pipes under the over-60 school, it’s a pretty tight space that you don’t really know until you get there. By the time the contractors were able to get deep after pumping out the water, there were more problems than they thought and they needed additional help and contractors to properly fix the problem.”

O’Connor estimated the repairs will cost between $10,000 and $20,000, but the exact cost is still uncertain.

“That wasn’t planned – burst pipes, they have to be repaired,” O’Connor said. “When it’s all said and done, we’ll probably be between ($10,000 and $20,000), but obviously we won’t know until the contractors are able to get on site and determine how much time they need .”

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