Sewage Building

Employees who work in the Limestone County Schools central office on Jefferson Street in Athens, Alabama, claim the building is unsafe, and have alleged it may be to blame for several employee illnesses.

Waste-related issues at a board of education building in Alabama are leaving more than just a bad taste in employees' mouths.

Dirty water, foul smells and extensive mold caused employees of the Limestone County Schools (LCS) central office to ask the Board of Education for permission to vacate the basement of their building in Athens, Alabama.

LCS Chief Financial Officer Anne Swanner presented the case to the board, saying the basement is a health hazard to staff currently working in it.

The basement seems to be the worst area, employees say, because of extensive sewage and rainwater leakage problems. When rain hits, staff members must rush to the basement to cover students’ permanent records in trash bags to protect them from damage, staffers said.

“Some of our concerns are some of our employees being exposed to mold and mildew,” Swanner said. 

Swanner, who works on a different floor, said her office by the bathrooms is constantly overwhelmed by a stench from backed-up commodes that have to be cleared with acid.

“Those bathrooms get stopped up and the smell is horrible,” she said.

Water in the pipes is also not sanitary to consume, Swanner said, and the system is spending somewhere around $200 each month to purchase bottled water.

“I came in the office one morning — brown, dirty water was pouring out of where the water fountain was,” she said.

The board will vote at its Tuesday meeting to temporarily lease another space. 

Croomes writes for the Athens (Al.) News Courier.

Recommended for you