Broken sprinkler closes Falmouth library

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FALMOUTH — Falmouth Memorial Library will be closed at least until Saturday, Oct. 22, to repair water damage from a broken sprinkler system.

The Fire Department confirmed there was damage Tuesday to books and other materials at the Lunt Road building, and that the library was closed.

Library Director Lyn Sudlow said Tuesday night that the library had hired High Tech Fire to flush out some build-up in the pipes of the dry sprinkler system as part of the building’s routine maintenance schedule. 

“One of the cast iron pipes in the attic gave way under the additional pressure of the water that was part of the process of flushing out the pipes,” she said. “The flooding in the attic cascaded down into the circulation desk area and children’s picture book area for the most part.”

Sudlow said a group had been meeting in the nearby meeting space, and had quickly helped the library staff move books and equipment away from the leak. The water was shut off and the library called a company to come dry out the wet carpet, sheetrock and furniture.

“High Tech Fire techs came back to determine the cause and replaced three pipes that were rusted enough to develop pinholes under the additional water pressure,” Sudlow said.

She added that it would likely take until Saturday to dry everything out, move furniture back and reshelve books. She hoped the library would reopen after that.

“It is still a little early to assess what the permanent damage might be,” Sudlow said.

Emily Parkhurst can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or eparkhurst@theforecaster.net. Follow Emily on Twitter: @emilyparkhurst.

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