My very unusual week – Part 2



“What vegetable needs a plumber? A leek.” –  Tapori Baa.



This is the second of three articles describing the hectic week I had and the ways the different folks I interacted with responded to the incidents. Four years ago a pipe in the bathroom decided to make itself known and leaked a goodly amount of water into that room. At the time a 4′ x 5 ‘ foot hole was carved into the ceiling and I was assured the situation had been handled. A piece of plywood had been placed over the area. I guess they miscalculated. — gc.

One week ago on late Saturday evening as I walked by the main bathroom I heard a drip-drip-dripping sound of water. I turned on the light and immediately noticed that a flow of water had begun leaking from the ceiling and the tempo and cadence of the drops was steadily increasing. The time was 11:10 p.m.

I placed a call to the 24/7 emergency service number and reported the incident. The female operator wrote down the particulars and assured me that help would be here shortly.

Fifteen minutes later I received another call from a member of the after hours maintenance crew assuring me that he would be there in about 45 minutes. I tried to impress the fact that the flow of the water was increasing. I placed a pail between the tub and the toilet seat and hoped for the best.

The repairman arrived ten minutes later and tried to assess the situation. I pointed out to him that the water was accumulating in the are above the room. To illustrate that fact I pressed on the plywood barrier and water began to belch outwardly.

I left the area and allowed the man do his appraisal. A few minutes after that he returned to the living room and informed me that he would need to contact the contractor and have extra help sent out to assist him.

The clock was ticking and the water still flowing. He told me he could not turn off the hot water because the building was heated by steam and to shut off the boiler would put the other tenants literally in the cold.

By 12:30 a.m. the two-man crew was busily tending to the leaky pipe; the hot water had been turned off and all was going well. A potential disaster had been averted.

The task this time around was not as challenging as it had been four years ago when an access hole had to be carved into the ceiling. That situation involved a four man team, plastic curtains and lots of noise as sawing, cutting and hammering were involved.

The two men worked on the problem from midnight until after three a.m. The contractor’s plumber and repair person told me that the piping used for years ago was an inferior grade and suggested that the added water pressure was too much for the installed valve to handle. A system flush had taken place a few days previously.

At 3:25 a.m. they were leaving my suite and told me that another company would be around a few hours later with a dehumidifier and heavy-duty fan to dry out the room. That person would be here at 8:30 a.m. I thought I could get a few hours sleep. Or so I thought.

The water clean up person arrived on time and then after a few minutes of setting things up discovered that the machine was not working. She would return within the hour with another one….which she did.

For the next three days the sound of the industrial strength fan dominated the scene . I felt like I lived near an international airport . 

The plumber before he left congratulated me for reporting the incident so quickly. The damaged valve was ready to pop and it would not have lasted the  night. Whew. Knock on wood.

In the third and final installment I will relate how our unlocked laundry room had become a dope den where non residents were partying hearty at tenant’s expense. — gc


Part 3. Den of Iniquity                                        continued ……






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