By Nikki Ellis
While students were home with family and friends over the holiday break, the animals who lived on the second floor in Professors Matthew McKinney and Kristi Grassi’s lab rooms at Alderson Broaddus University froze to death amongst other problems in the building.
On December 27, parts of Philippi fell victim to a power outage. The power outage unfortunately affected some of the buildings on campus. The hardest hit was Kemper Redd.
According to weather reports, the average temperatures for Philippi in December are recorded as 46 degrees being the high, and the low at 26 degrees.
Unable to stay warm, six fish, two birds, and a snake froze to death.
Samantha Grimes, a senior Environmental Science and Natural Resource Management double major, entered the building with a security officer to find the deceased animals and additional damage.
“When I went to feed the animals, I had to get a security officer to get into the building.” Grimes said. “We heard an alarm going off and there was an alert about smoke in the boiler rooms.”
Grimes is McKinney’s Teacher Assistant who undertook the care of the animals and is deeply saddened by the incident, as well as the whole Natural Resource Club.
Adding to the chaos, the frozen pipes soon burst, flooding five rooms on the first and third floors of the building.
Professors Adam Anderson and Sobha Priyadarshini Gorugantula are misplaced from their offices due to the water damage from the flooding.
According to reports from professors in the building, there were no reports from the city about it being a planned power outage despite rumors.
“From what I know it wasn’t a planned outage,” McKinney said.
McKinney’s lab housed the fish and the snake that fell victim to the freezing temperatures, while the two birds were in Grassi’s room.