Tacoma - City officials were unable to provide a damage estimate Friday for sophisticated laboratory equipment doused with water after a pipe broke at the new Center for Urban Waters.
Lab workers made initial checks of the equipment Friday but will need help from manufacturers to fully assess damage, said Geoffrey Smyth, division manager for Science & Engineering, the group that occupies the city’s portion of the building at 326 E. D St. in Tacoma.
A pipe burst between the third floor and the roof of the center after this week’s snowstorm and freezing weather. Water flowed into labs on the second and third floors and into locker and storage space on the ground floor. The flooding was discovered Thursday.
A complete assessment might require sending equipment back to manufacturers or having their representatives come to the Urban Waters building and do inspections, said Lorna Sutton, a city spokeswoman.
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Damage to the building is the responsibility of the property management company, GVA Kidder Mathews, she said. The company has had crews in cleaning and will bring in various experts to assess the damage and try to determine the cause of the pipe break.
According to Smyth, 95 percent of the city’s Urban Waters staff members will be able to work Monday.