Officials are working to pick up the pieces after receiving word over the weekend that part of Linderman Elementary School in Polson.
On Saturday, Jan. 6, officials were notified that a portion of the south non-weight bearing parapet wall of Linderman Elementary School collapsed into a locker room, according to a press release from Superintendent Rex Weltz.
There were no injuries.
Weltz confirmed the Linderman gymnasium is closed to all activities for the remainder of the school year.
As of Monday, school administrators Scott Wilson and Jay Krantz were developing a plan to accommodate extracurricular activities that were scheduled at Linderman.
Busses will be rerouted to the front of the Linderman drop off. No busses or cars are allowed to use the back portion of the school or the parking lot for student pick up or drop off.
The parking lot to the school is entirely closed, with the exception of the northern-most row of parking spaces that run parallel to the sidewalk along the front of the building, on 4th Ave. East.
On Friday, Jan. 5, Weltz said that the south wall of the school was bowing from the stress of snow that accumulated over New Year’s weekend.
He said that on Monday, Jan. 1, a maintenance supervisor alerted him of the bowing wall.
A structure engineer was called to assess the situation. Paradigm V2 Architects P.C. out of Missoula also looked at the wall.
As of Friday, Weltz said the contractor, Bitterroot Welding & Hydraulics, also out of Missoula, was ready to begin the repair work but the project couldn’t start until the structural engineer completes drawings.
Weltz also said Friday that there was no estimate as to how much the repair will cost.
“It’s potentially an insurance issue,” he explained, adding that PayneWest Insurance, the district’s insurance provider, will determine the official cause of the compromised wall.
“They’re going to pay real close attention to the structural engineer” to determine a cause, Weltz said.
Monies will be pulled from the maintenance fund, if needed, Weltz added.
Linderman Elementary was built in the 1950s and has seen renovations through the years, Weltz said.
Krantz can be reached by email firstname.lastname@example.org.