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Smell at new school getting old


There’s a big stink at the new school.

A sewer smell is upsetting students and proving to be a headache for Lake Roosevelt Schools officials.

For maintenance director Randy Bowman, it means getting up above the classrooms frequently to treat the coolers, mainly on the elementary side of the new school.

The complaint came up at the recent school board meeting. The problem isn’t new; in fact, it is a carryover from last year.

School district Superintendent Paul Turner said that he thinks the problem centers around “hard water” and may cause the district to put in a water softener at the source where water comes into the school. Turner said, and Bowman agrees, that the hard water is plugging up the drains in the coolers, causing a sewer smell to creep up through the traps.

One first-grade room has been the victim of the smell more often than the rest of the building, Bowman said. He has to get up in the ceiling once every couple of weeks to treat the coolers above the affected rooms.

The junior/senior side of the building has largely been spared.

“I usually try to treat the problem first thing in the morning, when I get a complaint,” Bowman explained. It only takes a few minutes to correct the problem, he stated.

The district is trying to decide how to deal with the sewer smell and hopefully find a permanent fix to the problem.

As if an odor problem isn’t enough in the new school, there has been a leak in the roof as well. However, this was readily fixed by the roofing contractor, Bowman stated.

When it rained hard, water was coming through one of the light fixtures.

The school opened in the fall of 2014.

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