Sewer backups at East Coweta High School over the past few days have resulted in closed bathrooms, moved classrooms and a stinky situation.
On Wednesday, students on the Brantley East and Brown halls were moved to other classrooms following backups in bathrooms.
Students were back in their regular classrooms Thursday, according to Dean Jackson, public information officer for Coweta County Schools, and the problem was repaired.
The problem first surfaced Oct. 3. Maintenance crews came out and assumed the issue was a blockage in the sewer line. The lines were cleared, and the next day, there was no issue, Jackson said.
Students were on fall break Friday and Monday, but when they returned Tuesday, the problem started again. Sewage backed up in two bathrooms, which were closed, and maintenance crews again worked to clear a presumed blockage.
During the outside work on the sewer lines, Jackson said “there have definitely been noticeable odor problems.”.
On Wednesday, there was backed up sewage in the bathrooms again, which were closed and not in use. While the bathrooms were being cleaned and disinfected, students on those hallways were moved to other classrooms, Jackson said, and parents were notified.
A grandmother of an ECHS student, who asked not to be named, said that her grandson said the sewage backup was in the hallways and coming into the classroom, and her daughter saw sewage in the staff parking lot Wednesday.
The woman said she felt like the school should have been closed until the problem was fixed.
A comment posted on ECHS Principal Steve Allen’s Facebook page referred to a “river” on Brown Hall and a “geyser” in the staff parking lot.
Also on Wednesday, school systems facilities crews figured out why the work they were doing wasn’t working – a blockage wasn’t the problem.
Instead, there was damage to the service line. Last week, electrical crews were doing work nearby, and used a machine to bore into the ground. That borer had damaged the sewer line, causing the backup. Once the source of the problem was discovered, it was a relatively quick fix.
Things should be back to normal today.
“We certainly hope so,” Jackson said Thursday afternoon.