Alynda Gatewood, a sophomore psychology major who lives in Callahan, said she returned from winter break early, about a week and a half before the start of classes.
During this time, she received two emails from Kim Schulze, housing facilities specialist. One, sent on Jan. 5, said that there was scheduled maintenance planned on Jan. 6 and the water in the building would be shut off. On Jan. 8, a second email was sent, saying that an emergency necessitated the water be shut off immediately.
Gatewood didn’t pay these emails much mind, though, as the water was only shut off from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m. on both occasions, and she didn’t shower during those times.
The problem started for her, however, when classes resumed.
“I started tying things together when I went to turn on the sink and the water wouldn’t turn on at all,” Gatewood said. “There would be no hot water, no cold water, no water at all.”
When she took a shower after noticing this one time, she said the water didn’t stay on. She had just gotten shampoo in her hair when the water suddenly stopped.
“I had shampoo in my hair and shampoo in my eyes, and no way to get it out,” Gatewood said.
After turning the knob off and back on again, the water came back on – except it was all cold water.
“Needless to say, I was pissed,” Gatewood said.
She said that this has been happening since the start of the semester.
The shut off on Jan. 6 occurred to replace a broken sink faucet and the emergency shut off on Jan. 8 was to replace a leaking valve, Larry Blake, assistant vice president of facilities management, said.
However, Director of University Housing Arnie Slaughter said he isn’t aware of any residual issues that would still be occurring.
Blake said that the issues residents were experiencing could have been attributed to a clogged water softener. The issue with the water softener was realized and the water was rerouted to bypass the water softener on Jan. 27, according to Blake.
These issues have not only affected Gatewood, though. Freshmen Jacob Siler, Nick Gilman and Austin Mayfield, as well as junior Danielle Hoffman, have all experienced these issues.
“Usually, it [the shower] will at least turn on, but the water pressure may not be very good,” said Hoffman, a math education and statistics major.
Slaughter did say that the circumstances sound like an issue beyond what is normally expected after a water shut off, and that Housing will be investigating.
In these circumstances where residents are experiencing any issues with their room or the facilities in general, such as water pressure, the best thing for residents to do is to fill out a maintenance request form or, in the event of an emergency, contact the RA on duty for the appropriate hall or the campus police, if necessary.