Broken pipe floods Lawrence County Courthouse; crews cleaning-up

Crews at the Lawrence County Courthouse are cleaning up and assessing the damage after a pipe burst and caused a flood!
County officials have not determined the dollar amount for the damage yet but say they have insurance to cover it.

The courthouse is closed and employees are at home. Right now officials are trying to clean-up and make repairs so county business can re-open.
"We're working as fast as we can to get everything back-up, at least temporarily so we can service people," said County Clerk Chris Jobe.

Around 5:00 a.m. Monday, a pipe burst in the ceiling on the second floor above the PVA office.
911 dispatchers in the building discovered water gushing everywhere and gave county officials an early wake-up call.

"When I got there, you could hear the water spraying where it busted. It sounded like Niagara Falls," said Judge-Executive John Osborne.
"Water running down the stairway, down the hallway, through the ceilings," said Jobe.

The water was cut-off, but the estimated 300-500 gallons of water damaged the PVA and County Clerk's offices.

Clean-up crews pumped out the water but it is still in the carpet. Now crews are checking for mold.
County officials report no major damage to equipment or records.
"It could have been a lot worse," said Jobe.

Workers have already repaired the broken pipe. Judge-Executive John Osborne says the building's old age is what caused the pipe to burst. The copper pipes were installed in 1964.

Officials say Thursday is the earliest the PVA and County Clerk's offices could re-open. If clean-up is not finished then, the courthouse will re-open next week.
"We're taking it day by day," said Jobe.

Officials say anyone in Lawrence County who needs to renew car tags before January can go to a neighboring county, but anyone with a specialty plate will have to wait until the Lawrence County Courthouse re-opens.


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