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BRITT | An ice dam has caused damage to the West Hancock High School entryway.

That’s what Stacey Goepel, West Hancock director of transportation and buildings and grounds, told the Summit-Tribune Thursday, March 14.

“Other than a dozen ceiling tiles in the front entryway area and to the north hallway, we really don't have any damage,” he said. “We’re really pretty fortunate compared to some of the other schools that have had to close because of it.”

The combination of above-freezing temperatures, precipitation and snowmelt are to blame for the ice dam that caused water to seep underneath the steel roof’s flashing into the east side of the entryway, Goepel said, adding it has nothing to do with the roof that was recently recoated.

He said he and the buildings and grounds staff would work on breaking up the foot of ice Thursday morning to allow water to flow appropriately before replacing the tiles.

Goepel estimates the repairs will cost nearly $400, including the replacement tiles and labor.

“Other than taking out the damaged tile and replacing it, moving buckets around, breaking up the ice, it’s a minimal dollar,” he said. “The biggest thing is inconvenience and where it’s at.”

Goepel said this year’s weather is the worst he’s seen in his 25 years in public buildings and grounds, and the school’s 1970s gutter system hasn’t helped.

The replacement of the 40-year-old gutters and downspouts on the west side of the high school are part of the school district’s high school renovations project slated to begin this spring. The project is estimated to cost $527,570 with about $10,000 for the gutters, according to a Feb. 15 ISG cost summary.

“Hopefully, it’s better next winter,” he said.

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Reach Reporter Ashley Stewart at 641-421-0533. Follow her on Twitter at GGastewart.

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