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Published January 23, 2012, 07:02 PM

Cleanup Continues at Lancaster, MN, School After Sprinkler Bursts

LANCASTER, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Students are expected to return to school in Lancaster on Tuesday. Classes were canceled Monday to continue cleanup after a sprinkler line burst on Saturday.

By: David Schwab, WDAZ

LANCASTER, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Students are expected to return to school in Lancaster on Tuesday. Classes were canceled Monday to continue cleanup after a sprinkler line burst on Saturday.

The smell of wet wood and bleach fill the Lancaster School building as staff continue to clean up after a sprinkler pipe broke on Saturday afternoon.

"We had water running for three, four, maybe five hours before the fire department was alerted," Lancaster superintendent Brad Homstad said.

What made the situation worse is where the sprinkler system broke.

"Well the water had leaked in on the third floor and actually had came down these stairs and was covering all of these floors," teacher Kristi Steen said.

"It went down through the vents but a lot of it just seeped down the walls and we actually did have some water running down the stairs," Homstad said.

Soaked carpet in the hallways and in many classrooms had to be removed as did many ceiling tiles.

Some computers, TVs and smart boards were also damaged.

"Books in the library were damaged but not all of the books. We did box them up so we could take stock of what was damaged," Steen said.

Word of the water-damaged school brought out lots of volunteers.

"We had 100-150 parents, students and even people from other communities, other fire departments coming in to help with the cleanup," Homstad said.

Professional cleaners are being brought in to assess how much moisture remains in the walls and ceilings. Homstad says it's critical to get things dried over the next few days to prevent any mold from growing.

Superintendent Homstad says earlier damage estimates are about $150,000. The school is ensured for this kind of damage.

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