Brief: Pipeline bursts indicate bigger construction issue

Paige Esterly and Gavin Libbey

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Two pipelines broke within 24 hours. This issue hints at an underlying problem with Paly's construction project. Photo by Paige Esterly.

Two pipelines broke within 24 hours. This issue hints at an underlying problem with Paly’s construction project. Photo by Paige Esterly.

Two water pipelines in Palo Alto High School’s construction site burst within the past 24 hours, illustrating the ongoing issues of Paly’s construction projects, according to the administration.

The first pipe broke at approximately 5 p.m. yesterday evening, according to Assistant Principal Jerry Berkson. According to Berkson, plumbers and construction workers shut the water off for over two hours while repairs were being made.

Berkson was notified at 9:21 a.m. this morning of a second pipeline bursting in the same site. Allegedly, the water was shut off for another 20 minutes earlier today while the second repair was being made, although Berkson was not informed of the exact time.

According to Berkson, the construction workers accidentally drilled through ground and into the pipes not drawn into the construction plan, causing them to rupture.

“The original plans are not 100 percent accurate with what’s out there,” Berkson said. “The plans might say there’re pipes here so go ahead and dig here, but they’re wrong. You can’t avoid pipes you don’t know about.”

Berkson blamed the inaccurate plans for the ongoing construction delays.

“I’m told that [the faulty plans] are one of the issues with the construction and why they’re behind,” he said.