About 21 Foothill and Stern Hall residents have been displaced and relocated to temporary housing accommodations because of flooding and water damage caused by a ruptured fire hydrant, according to campus spokesperson Adam Ratliff.
On Saturday evening, a driver crashed into a fire hydrant, causing water to pool into the nearby residence halls. According to Ratliff, the campus is working with a professional restoration services company to fix the issue in both bedrooms and lounges. The campus anticipates the restoration will take up to four weeks, Ratliff added.
“I first noticed water was obviously spewing everywhere. It looked like a torrential downpour of rain in … but in one area,” campus freshman Genevieve Brooks, who witnessed the event from her window, said. “I did not think it would get down to Stern, and I did not think that it was going to do the amount of damage that it did.”
Stern Hall, as well as buildings six and seven of Foothill were affected the most, according to campus freshman Brianna Johnston.
When Emi Tran — another campus freshman and Foothill resident — went to get her laundry after the incident happened, she noted the water in the laundry room went up to her calves.
“All the runoff from up on the hill … came down onto our loading dock,” campus senior Madison Nelson said. “There was piles of rocks and there was mud everywhere.”
According to Nelson, the kitchen was shut down the next morning, and the water supply was cut off. She said it “was just a minor setback in the beginning of the day,” and that they were able to use the kitchen about 10:30 a.m.
The driver was arrested by the Berkeley Police Department on suspicion of a DUI and an alcohol content of over .08, according to UCPD spokesperson Sgt. Nicolas Hernandez.