The plumbing in Simpson Residence first floor South experienced serious complications over this weekend.
Freshmen Matthew Hastreiter and Nick Brown, who live in room 103, were about to go to church Sunday morning when their sink erupted and, in the words of freshman Mitch Rayer, “sploodged everywhere.”
Hastreiter said that exactly 10:08 a.m., “sludge” shot two feet in the air and brown water began rising in the sink.
“Our toothbrushes were adulterated,” Brown said.
Brown went to Walmart to buy drain cleaner while Hastreiter ran to tell senior Jack Hummel, Simpson’s head resident assistant, about the disaster. Hummel suggested they call security.
Meanwhile, freshman William Bird, another 1FS resident, said he broke into the maintenance closet to retrieve buckets to bail out the rising water.
Maintenance arrived and began bailing buckets of black sludge outside, but could not keep up with the overflow.
They brought the sludge to the room across the hall and deposited it into the toilet. Rayer said their toilet no longer flushes properly. The maintenance men managed to unclog the drain – just before the sink exploded a second time.
“All the sewage in Hillsdale county came through our sink,” Hastreiter said.
“Like a lateral volcano,” Brown said.
The new eruption was caused by people showering on the floor above Room 103, so freshman Clayton Josiah ran upstairs to tell the upper halls to stop showering.
“It looked like poop,” Hastreiter said.
“And smelled like burnt poop wrapped in hair,” Rayer added.
It took until 4 p.m. for the maintenance men to fix the problem and then they spent two hours cleaning the room, cutting out the carpet in front of the sink and sanitizing the surrounding area, Hastreiter said.
He said the problem appeared to be fixed until he and Brown were sitting doing homework at 10 p.m. A gurgling noise warned the roommates something was amiss, and the sink began filling with water once again.
Brown started bailing water with a trashcan as Hastreiter again told the upper halls to discontinue their showers.
Maintenance came again Monday morning around 7:30 a.m., but when Hastreiter returned he said their room had been “desecrated.”
“My exact words were, ‘Oh no, oh no, oh man, oh man.’ There were tarps on the floor filled with the black sludge.”
Their sink was removed and they had to empty their rooms while they temporarily live with other Simpson residents.
“At least we are getting new flooring,” Brown said, “And a custom sink – Chief [Jeff Rogers, associate dean of men] said we might even get a plaque.”
Rayer said the moral of the story is simple – through it all, 1FS sticks together with no brother left behind. The young men agreed with Rayer, and Hastreiter said he was thankful for the help.
“In all seriousness, I am very thankful that the maintenance crew spent upwards of five hours on a Sunday afternoon helping us out.”