Gadsden County Schools sees flooding inside classrooms after Hurricane Sally

Published: Sep. 18, 2020 at 9:24 PM EDT
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GADSDEN COUNTY, Fla. (WCTV) - Gadsden County Schools remained closed on Friday after schools in the district needed a cleanup due to flooding and storm damage from Hurricane Sally.

The director of facilities for Gadsden County Schools, Bill Hunter, says the following schools saw the most storm damage:

  • Chattahoochee Elementary
  • Gadsden Elementary
  • Shanks Middle School
  • Carter Paramore Academy
  • George Monroe Elementary

Hunter says the heavy rain in a short amount of time overwhelmed the stormwater system, causing the water to back up and go inside some of the buildings and classrooms.

At Chattahoochee Elementary School, a staff member said the school saw several leaks and floodwater come under the doors.

“It was pretty deep, it flooded several classrooms, flooded several areas. But, other than that, we was okay,” said Rena Nelson, the instructional coach at Chattahoochee Elementary.

Over at James Shanks Middle School, the principal says their school also saw extensive damage from the Hurricane Sally.

“It was covering a widespread of areas but it wasn’t substantially deep,” said Maurice D. Stokes, principal at James Shanks Middle School.

Hunter says their maintenance and cleaning crews were able to respond to the schools quickly to prevent any long-term damage.

“We got in there and we sucked up all the water off the floor and we’re actually using drying fans to make sure the spots for the water got into the building you know or in any carpet or anything like that gets dried out real good,” said Hunter.

Hunter adds due to the age of many Gadsden County Schools, it is possible the schools could see damage again if another heavy storm system were to come through the area.

“To say that it wouldn’t be expected when you have that amount of water dumping, I don’t think there is any construction is going to stop 100%,” said Hunter.

Hunter says their crew will be monitoring for mold.

Superintendent Roger Milton tells WCTV they plan to reopen the schools on Monday, September 21.

Copyright 2020 WCTV. All rights reserved.

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