Manitoba

Flooding closes Winnipeg junior high school

A Winnipeg junior high school has been closed due to flooding that could have been prevented, experts say.

A Winnipeg junior high school has been closed due to flooding that could have been prevented, experts say.

Andrew Mynarski V.C. Junior High School, at 1111 Machray Ave., closed after a water pipe broke early Thursday morning, flooding the basement boiler room to the roof.

"Sometime [Thursday] morning, probably around five o'clock, this happened. The custodian noticed it around six," said Neil Crane, building director with the Winnipeg School Division.

The school's 380 students will have to be bussed elsewhere for classes for the rest of the year.

Meanwhile, about two dozen maintenance workers were pumping water out of the building on Friday. A city spokesman said Friday it appears two valves had failed.

The school could be closed for the rest of the school year if its boilers were damaged beyond repair. Such repairs may cost the school division nearly $1 million.

School officials arranged for students to go to other schools Monday morning:

  • Grade 7 students will be picked up from LordNelson school, on McPhillips north of Burrows, and bussed to Sir Sam Steele School in Elmwood.
  • Grade 8 students will be picked up at Robertson School, near McPhillips and Inkster, and also bussed to Sir Sam Steele School.
  • Grade 9 students are being asked to make their way to Issac Newton School at Aberdeen Avenue near Arlington Street.
  • Students in the Life Skills and Developmental Educationprograms will be picked up from home as usual, and bussed to Shaughnessy Park School.
  • Adaptive Skills students will also be picked up from home, but bussed to Prairie Rose School.

Parents will be notified of thenew arrangementsover the weekend.

Flooding could have been prevented: safety expert

Had the school installed a simple $150 water detector, such a device might have alerted staff earlier to flooding, thus reducing the damage, a school safety expert said Friday.

"Once water is detected, a telephone call will go out to our maintenance guy, and he can certainly make sure all our pumps are running," said Keith Thomas,the risk manager with the Manitoba Association of School Trustees.

The association recommended the school install the device in the 1990s, Thomas said.

"We realize they have budgets to meet, and in the case of Winnipeg School Division, something like thiscould be $50,000 to $100,000 for all their buildings," he said.