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JCC Building Update (2/28 9:30p)

posted Feb 28, 2011, 5:45 PM by Allen Edinberg
Good Evening,
The JCC will be closed on Tuesday March 1st, so that repairs and inspections may be completed. 
Here is an update of what happened and what is happening next.
As you know, the building and the Preschool were evacuated during the lunch period today after one of teachers smelled a faint odor of gas outside the building in the faculty parking area.  Lisa, Kathy, and the staff conducted a professional, orderly, and safe evacuation of the building, moving the children to the Kids Club at Westboro Tennis and Swim.  Given the nature of the problem, parents were instructed to pick up their children at the club.
The Problem:  Snow and ice from the roof damaged the pipes around 2 of the three gas meters for the building.  There was also some damage to one of the two electric meters.  A  Both NStar and the Westborough Fire Department tested for gas and found that no gas leaked into the JCC.  Both Nstar and WFD monitored the air inside the JCC until NStar was able to shut off the gas to the building.
While the leaks appear to be on the pipes going into the meters, one of the pipes from the meters into the building may have moved.  Before we can go back into the building, this pipe must be tested and, if needed repaired.  It must also be inspected.
What Happened Today:
  • NationalGrid turned off power to the building until the meter can be replaced.
  • In order to turn of the gas to the building, NStar had to "unjam" the valve in the street (hence the crews digging up Oak Street)
  • Our neighbors at Westboro Tennis and Swim provided us with the backhoe, and some men with shovels, to move the thousands of pounds of snow covering the meters.
  • The owner Orlando Excavating of Westborough personally came out to run the back hoe, and did a masterful job navigating our playground.
  • NStar has repaired all of the pipes and valves they could this evening, and has labeled pipes still in need of repair and inspection.
What Should Happen Tomorrow:
  • NationalGrid should replace the broken meter and restore power to the building in the morning (if not done overnight)
  • NStar will send pipefitters to complete their repairs first thing in the morning
  • We have a pipefitter coming first thing to test and, if needed, repair the pipe going into the building
  • We have already notified the Buidling Department in Westborough, that we expect to need a plumbing/gas pipe inspection.
  • Once power is restored, NStar will restore gas service via the 2 meters not damaged
  • Once testing, repairs, and the inspection are complete, NStar will restore gas service via the 3rd meter
  • We will then be able to turn on heat and hot water, and prepare to reopen the building
If all goes well, the building and the JCC Preschool will be open on Wednesday morning.
We all have many people to thank.  So big thank you's to ...
  • Lisa, Kathy, and our staff putting safety first and for safely evacuating the building even before we were sure there was a problem.
  • Julia for contacting the right resources at the right time and managing communications
  • The Westborough Fire Department, Police Department, and Dept. of Public Works for their timely, professional, and helpful responses.  
  • NationalGrid and the two crews from NStar for their rapid response and for going above and beyond to identify and solve this problem quickly.
  • Westborough Tennis and Swim, first, for providing a safe, fun evacuation location for the children and staff.
  • Westborough Tennis and Swim, again, for providing expertise, equipment, and manpower so that repairs could begin immediately.
  • Orlando Excavating of Westborough for leaving other jobs in order to help us and for working the back hoe with amazing skill
  • Our preschoolers, who stayed in a line and together, and followed instructions beautifully
  • Our parents and caretakers for understanding the situation, remaining calm, and offering help and support
We will continue to post updates on the website.
Please note that until power is restored, the JCC phones are out of service.
Allen Edinberg