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Mudge House flooding displaces 8 residents

First-year Emily Szabo wasn’t sure what triggered the fire alarm in Mudge House on April 7, but when black water began seeping from the neighboring suite, she knew it couldn’t be anything good. By the end of the day, a third of her carpet would be soaked and — by the following week — all of it stripped. But it was nothing compared to the damage wrought in the adjacent suite, where water was gushing from the wall.

Szabo, who is studying electrical and computer engineering, said that the flooding started when the fire sprinkler, on which her neighbor had hung a pair of jeans, broke. CMUPD and the fire department arrived at the scene around 10 minutes after the alarm was triggered.

“There were one to three inches of standing water on the whole floor,” Szabo recalled in an interview with The Tartan. She did not know the specific measurements, but affirmed that the volume was “definitely over an inch.”

The residents of the suite directly affected by the flooding were permanently relocated. Because there was a wall dividing Szabo’s suite from the origin of the flooding, she figured she would return to her room in a few days and not have to relocate all of her belongings. During that time, she stayed with her sister, who is also a student at Carnegie Mellon. After a week, however, Szabo decided to move to the housing alternative offered by the university, where her roommate was already staying.

On April 13, the roommates were told that they could move back to their room in Mudge. With only a few weeks of school left, they preferred to stay in the Fairfax apartment to which they had been relocated. Unoccupied Fairfax apartments are also being used for overflow IQ Housing.

The university accepted the request made by Szabo and her roommate to stay in Fairfax for the rest of the academic year. “I’m really grateful to all the workers who were there to help on Thursday,” she said, referring to the day of the flooding. Amidst the business and excitement of Carnival activities, Szabo appreciated workers’ immediate response and clean up efforts following the flooding.