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Sprinkler Breaks In Atherton Hall, Students Told To Find Somewhere Else To Sleep

A sprinkler broke in Atherton Hall early Friday morning, displacing residents for much of the night. The sprinkler broke around 1:45 a.m., waking many of Atherton’s residents and setting off the fire alarm, South Halls Senior Coordinator Jennifer Saltsgiver and Residence Life Coordinator on duty Tauheedah Alexander told a group of students gathered outside the building following the alarm.

The burst sprinkler caused flooding down a storage elevator shaft to the ground floor on the western side of the building. Residents were sent to Redifer Commons to await permission to eventually go back to their rooms, save for students living on the affected floor.

Residents took to Twitter soon after the building’s alarms went off before being sent to Redifer:

With no warning or plan by the University in place, affected students were told by building administrators that they needed to find somewhere else to sleep for the night.

Ground floor students flocked to downtown apartments and friends’ couches before many returned to Atherton early Friday morning to find the remnants of minor water damage. In one room adjacent to the storage elevator, the students hurried out amidst the alarm as water began seeping into their room. They laid down several towels in front of the door before quickly exiting the building.

When they returned at 7 a.m., their rooms had been primarily dried and water vacuumed by housing staff, the only casualties being a rug, and several articles of clothing.

Update: 12:18 p.m.

The ever-reliable Penn State police scanner has released the police chatter from last night’s flood. You can hear the pesky fire alarms ringing in the background, and the police describe the water as a “serious flow” disturbing the hallways. It’s a series of comical adventures as a team of police search to shut off the water valve. Have a listen for yourselves.

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