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Marshall campus needs costly repairs after freeze

By Megan Osborne

The Parthenon

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — Physical Plant workers are still working to complete repairs to damage caused by the freezing temperatures of the polar vortex Jan. 6-8, while dealing with current wintery weather and regularly scheduled projects.

The polar conditions that plagued the area in the last week of winter break caused severe damage in the John Deaver Drinko Library, Jenkins Hall, the Science Building and Gullickson Hall. The damages included frozen sprinkler lines, burst water lines and frozen heating coils.

Mark Cutlip, director of the Physical Plant for the past eight years, said there was no way he and his staff could have prepared for the damage the single-digit temperatures yielded.

“I’ve never seen equipment that was running freeze,” Cutlip said.

The cost of the damage is estimated to be over $100,000 including the cost of hiring four outside vendors to help with repairs.

Remaining repairs will not be complete until after spring break, even with extra hours put in on nights and weekends.

Dale Osburn, assistant director of the Physical Plant, said he hasn’t seen anything like this in his 35 years of working for the plant…

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