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Broken pipe leaves library soaked

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The Greenwood Public Library had fans blowing Thursday in an effort to dry carpets and walls after a frozen water pipe burst.

Water from the pipe spread a half-inch-deep across the floor in the library’s community meeting room on Tuesday. But that didn’t stop the library from reopening after being closed due to weather and didn’t damage books or library offices, director Cheryl Dobbs said.

The library opened at 11 a.m. Thursday.

The same ceiling pipe had frozen and burst several years ago, so this week library staff left faucets dripping and a heater running in the room, but the efforts didn’t work, she said.

Water flooded the room the library uses for programs and in which the library allows groups to meet. The pipe carries water to sinks in the community room.

Minus 14 degrees apparently was too cold for the pipe, Dobbs said.

The building’s alarm system alerted library staff when water began flowing into the community room, so two employees quickly went to the building to turn off the water system and clean up.

The pipe has been repaired, and the room should be dry by Saturday, Dobbs said.

She doesn’t know yet how much the repairs will cost. A remediation company will look at the carpet that was flooded to see if it could cause mold problems and needs to be replaced, she said.

Workers were scheduled to add more insulation to the pipe Thursday, and the library will consider installing a thermostat-controlled device to warm the pipe to prevent future freezing.

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