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High school classrooms flooded due to heavy rains

More than 10 classrooms were flooded at Sunnyside High School this past weekend, thanks to a rain storm that pounded the Yakima Valley Saturday afternoon.

Sunnyside School District Public Information Officer Julie Kaplicky explained that the flood occurred partly because the school's storm water system couldn't handle the amount of water that poured into it in such a short amount of time. She noted the other factor that contributed to the flooding involved some water pipes that had not been removed when the school was remodeled about 20 years ago.

Kaplicky explained that when the school was remodeled a new drainage system was put in place and all of the pipes from the old system were not removed. She noted this past Saturday the district learned that the pipes were also not capped. She said when the storm water started backing up through the school's storm water system, it started coming up through the abandoned pipes, ultimately overflowing and flooding 10 to 12 classrooms.

The classrooms affected by the flooding were spread through three different areas of the school. Two computer labs, the school shop, a biology room and several English classrooms were among those affected by the flood. Kaplicky added that there was also a little water that got into the school's gymnasium.

Classrooms weren't the only place affected by this past Saturday's rain storm. Kaplicky said water also seeped into the high school through the roof. She noted there was a small roof leak over the counseling office that led to a few Washington Assessment of Student Learning (WASL) tests getting wet. She noted that no tests were lost in the flooding.

Kaplicky said a crew of seven janitors came in Saturday to take care of the damage done by the flood. It took the crew nearly seven hours to clean up the school and get it ready for students on Monday.

"Everything is good to go for this morning (Monday)," Kaplicky said.

The school district met with its insurance company this morning to discuss the extent of the damage done by the rain storm.

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