Burst pipe damages Edmonds library; building to shutter for weeks

Books and media stayed dry. But Sno-Isle Libraries is unsure about the extent of damage to the building.

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EDMONDS — Sno-Isle Libraries is temporarily moving tens of thousands of books, DVDs and other media from its Edmonds branch after a burst pipe “soaked every square inch of carpet” there, according to a library district staff member.

The branch at 650 Main St. is expected to be closed at least two weeks while the building dries out, said Susan Hempstead, assistant director of strategic relations for Sno-Isle Libraries.

No one was at the library when the pipe burst. The resulting water damage was discovered around 7 a.m. Friday, Hempstead said.

Fortunately, the library’s collection was unscathed. It’s being moved to the district’s library service center in Marysville “out of an abundance of caution” while a contractor draws out the moisture, Hempstead said.

In all, there are about 54,000 items in the Edmonds collection, plus computers and other hardware.

“Everything is going to have to come out so that we can dry out the floor and really develop the recovery plan of what the next steps will look like,” Hempstead said.

The extent of the damage to the building is not yet known, she said.

The library district manages the branch under an agreement with the city, which owns the 17,000-square-foot building. The city-hired contractor will extract the water, remove soaked drywall and set up equipment to circulate and dehumidify the air, Hempstead said.

Staff from the Edmonds branch will continue to work to address the needs of local library users. All materials on hold have been moved to the Lynnwood branch at 19200 44th Ave W, where they can be picked up.

The book drop at the Edmonds library will remain locked while the building is closed, Hempstead said. People with materials due back to the branch will have additional time to return them. In the meantime, they can return the items to any other Sno-Isle Libraries branch.

For more information, visit sno-isle.org.

Rachel Riley: 425-339-3465; rriley@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @rachel_m_riley.

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