According to a report from the Telegraph Herald, a burst pipe in a Platteville school has eliminated for use more than half of the classrooms available less than one week before students are to return from winter break. The burst pipe caused damage to walls, ceilings, and floors at Neal Wilkins Early Learning Center, with eight of the school’s fourteen classrooms affected. An exact cost estimate is not yet available for the necessary repairs, although a property restoration company, First Onsite, has been at the school since Monday to assessing the damage. Repairs are expected to take eight weeks or longer.

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Reports from the Superintendent and Principal state that a maintenance worker discovered the broken pipe during routine rounds check on Monday morning. That’s when he discovered standing water in the hallway. The break was said to be caused by the frigidly cold temperatures from last week’s winter storm. It caused a pipe to freeze in the ceiling on the east side of the school that burst.

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In addition to the eight classrooms, the school library and some smaller multi-use spaces on the east side of the building were also affected. So far, there is no reported structural or electrical concerns.

The focus now is on preparing for the return of the school’s 220-odd students from winter break on Tuesday, January 3rd. Temporary classrooms and dividing walls are being erected in the school gym, and in other multipurpose areas which were unaffected. The school cafeteria also was undamaged by the pipe break, so meals can still be served as normal.

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