Clogs in Crescent
When students returned to campus after winter break, some living in the Crescent Residence Hall found problems with their showers and sinks.
Due to a broken mixing valve, a portion of Crescent lost hot water, according to Associate Vice President for Facilities Operations Keith Woodward. In an unrelated incident, an accumulation of food, hair, soap and grease caused a buildup in the drains of 12 Crescent suites between Jan. 19 and Jan. 24, Woodward said.
“There have been other drain backups [in the past] at the Crescent, but not this many at one time,” Woodward said.
This is likely because students were not using the showers and sinks over the winter vacation, he said.
“Items like food and grease that went down the drains … can solidify during periods when there is little water flow such as holiday breaks,” Woodward said.
Crescent Resident Assistant Katie Thompson was among the students who experienced these problems.
“Water came out through my bathroom sink,” Thompson said. “I had residents whose water came up through their kitchen sink and ruined their rug.”
Junior Emily Schiarrizi and her roommates said they had two inches of water from their shower cover their bathroom floor because of the hair in their drain.
After students reported these issues through phone calls and work requests, facilities snaked the drain lines to break up the clogs, Woodward said. Facilities also had the broken mixing valve replaced, he said.
While Thompson said facilities came to fix her sink immediately after she put in a work order, Schiarrizi said she and her roommates had to wait a little longer.
“It was [Martin Luther King Jr. Day] so [facilities] didn’t respond at first … but once they got here they were very good,” Schiarrizzi said. “The facilities lady was so nice and sterilized our whole bathroom, and was very apologetic.”
Junior Joseph Ugalde, who did not have hot water for two days, said that he was glad that the issue was resolved fairly quickly. However, he wished that students had been better informed.
“It would have been nice getting an email about the problem,” Ugalde said. “We would all like to know that we can avoid stepping into a freezing cold shower at 7 a.m. on a Tuesday.”
Facilities is working to ensure that the drains in Crescent do not get clogged again.
“Facilities is looking at organic chemicals that can be introduced to the drains to help break up the sludge-like material when there is low water flow during holiday breaks,” Woodward said.