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Evacuated Park-Stradley residents pitched frozen food

Daniel Chi / Asst. photo editor

Frozen food doesn’t smell too great when it spoils, and it spoils fast.
That’s why when 1,200 students were evacuated from Park-Stradley Hall for three nights after a Sept. 16 water main break, some people were concerned.
The building lost amenities such as hot water, drinking water, heating, air conditioning and electricity for several days following the break. The loss of electricity affected any food students were storing in their refrigerators.
“It’s not a smell anyone would want to have,” said Dave Isaacs, communications and media relations manager for Student Life.
Hall staff posted signs on doors Monday and Tuesday to tell residents to remove the food from their refrigerators, said Colin Amicon, a first-year in exploration.
“(When we were out) they checked rooms, they checked for damages,” Amicon said. “They probably checked the fridges, too.”
Isaacs said the smell would’ve been enough of an indication of abandoned food.
“I am not aware that anyone went refrigerator to refrigerator to check, but had anything been left, we would have probably smelled it,” Isaacs said.
Isaacs said students were requested to either throw the food away or take it to a friend’s to store it.
At an event Friday at the Ohio Union, which was also closed the night of Sept. 16 due to the water main break, students were welcomed back to their dorms with some food to help restock what they might have lost.
Items like apples, milk, cereal and frozen mac and cheese were given out, Isaacs said.
“We wanted to acknowledge that people lost stuff,” he said.
However, some students said they didn’t see all of the foods Isaacs listed.
“They had that party the other day at the Union and they gave us a bunch of canned foods and stuff, but nothing frozen,” Amicon said.
For some students, that wasn’t enough.
“I kind of lost a lot of money on all the food in my fridge, and my mom made me homemade stuff, and all of that spoiled, so it’s kind of unfortunate,” said Molly Simeur, a first-year in pre-nursing.
Students were permitted to return to their rooms Sept. 19. Heating and air conditioning are the only amenities still not functioning after Sept. 21.
The water main break affected Baker Hall East and West as well. Students in the Baker residence halls were only displaced the night of Sept. 16 but were permitted to return to their rooms the next morning at 7 a.m.
Officials are still investigating the cause of the break, Isaacs said.
Ohio State plans to credit each resident of Park-Stradley with $90, or $30 per night, for the inconvenience of their displacement.
Park-Stradley opened in August as part of a $171 million South Campus renovation project. The building was occupied for about a month before the water main break.

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