Temple University students living at the Edge at Avenue North couldn’t find a dry refuge from Friday’s steady rainfall after flooding forced residents to vacate the apartment building last night.
All residents were evacuated out of their rooms at around 8 p.m. after a broken sprinkler in a fourth floor room burst a pipe, seeping water into the lower floors, according to multiple students.
Residents in floors two through four and all guests were not allowed back into their rooms after the evacuation, which caused concern and frustration among the students, many of whom gathered outside or in the lobby. The Edge has official Temple Housing on floors two through five.
After the evacuation, management at the Edge told a crowd of students that they would have to wait at least three hours until they could provide them with additional information.
At about midnight, management decided to allow students entry to their rooms one-by-one, a process which an Edge representative estimated would last until at least 1 a.m. The representative said rooms 418 through 425 were the most severely damaged.
Second floor resident Garrett Summers, a sophomore advertising major, said he was told that someone hung something on the sprinkler in their room, causing it to break and drop a steady flow of water on their floor.
Marc Gordon, a sophomore tourism and hospitality major who lives on the fourth floor, said his neighbors could see the flooding as they evacuated the building.
“They saw water coming out of the doors,” Gordon said.
Residents who walked in after the evacuation were confused.
“I have no idea what’s going on,” third floor resident Yuki Uehara said. The senior Asian Studies major said he was concerned about the safety of the textbooks in his room.
Second floor resident Amanda Cole, a junior psychology major and a thrower on the track team, said she was worried about where students were going to sleep.
Cole said she was told that most of the damage was in the middle of the fourth floor hallway. Students were informed that some rooms suffered flooding to the extent where their beds were wet, Cole added.
To combat any possible water damage, the Edge will extract the water from their walls between noon and 4 p.m. today. Carpets will be sprayed and management
plans to put dehumidifiers in rooms with excess water damage.
The businesses housed underneath the Edge were also affected by the flooding. Water began leaking into Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwich shop at around 8:30 p.m. The water damage eventually weakened their walls enough that two shelves fell, shattering 14 jars of mayonnaise and 14 jars of peppers, according to a Jimmy John’s manager who asked not to be identified.
In an effort to quell hours of frustration, the Edge provided evacuated students with free doughnuts and muffins.
Mark Simpson, property manager at the Edge, and all present representatives from Temple Housing declined to comment on the incident, stating that they were not allowed to offer any information at this time.
Sarah Fry can be reached at Sarahfry@temple.edu.