Quarter of Queen E students in Petrolia stay home Friday

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Public works crews spent all of Thursday cleaning up debris.

There will be no classes for about 100 primary school students in Petrolia again Friday after a severe storm caused water damage in an elementary school which is under renovation.

Lambton-Kent District School Board Director of Education, Jim Costello, says 100 mile per hour winds ripped some temporary roofing off of Queen Elizabeth Public School Wednesday night. The storm, which caused extensive damage to trees and tore shingles off of roofs, left about a 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch of water inside the primary classrooms.

storm 5

A chestnut tree, which had grown into a wrought iron fence at the corner of Dufferin and Greenfield Streets in Petrolia took a hit during Wednesday’s storm.

A disaster restoration team was on the scene until 3:30 am Thursday but we’re not able to clean up the mess and secure the roof in time for school Thursday. About a quarter of the school population was asked to stay home Thursday.

By late Thursday afternoon, Costello says a delay in getting building materials to fix the roof forced the school board to ask the Grade 3 to 6 students to stay home Friday as well. “We want to make sure we have the roof secure,” says Costello. “We want it to be dry and secure before we put the students back in there and we want the air quality to be good.”

Costello isn’t sure if the weather related repairs will delay the $6 million renovation project at the school. It’s slated to be completed at the end of the school year.

Meantime, Town of Petrolia work crews made good progress cleaning up about a half dozen large trees blown over by the storm. By mid-morning, all the streets with fallen trees, including Princess Street which was the hardest hit, were reopened.

– Heather Wright


One Response to “Quarter of Queen E students in Petrolia stay home Friday”

  1. Sherril King

    Centennial School attendance is down so why not let the children be bused out to Centennial till the renovations are complete??