WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A lingering municipal water issue is forcing Westfield State University to cancel class and mandate that students leave their residence halls. Online classes will continue as normal.
Westfield State University posted the update on their website at about 4:30 Saturday afternoon.
They explain that low pressure is the problem. University officials say they have been in close contact with the city as they work to resolve the issue, but will cancel class from Monday November 21st through Wednesday November 23rd.
They are requiring that all students leave their residence halls by Sunday at 4:00PM.
The water issues come at an inconvenient time for students, as winter weather is on the way for Sunday, with the most snow expected west, in the Berkshires.
Sophomore Alyssa Serra told 22News, “We’re not really supposed to be using excess extra luxury water, such as showering and doing our laundry and stuff, which makes it a lot difficult.”
Junior Jeremiah Shumski added, “Toilets are usually clogged. Showers aren’t running. Its been a real pain in the butt. Worried about what Professors are going to be doing, if they’re going to have us double up on work and having take care of everything that was due this week, plus all the work that’s going to be due next week.”
Westfield University says they will continue to serve meals in the dining common, despite the low water pressure, until Sunday at 4:00PM. However, on Monday and Tuesday only a limited menu will be available at TJ Bistro.
During this time, the campus administrative offices will continue to be fully staffed.
This notice comes after the university posted at about 9:30 Saturday morning that water pressure on campus was improving.
The initial issue was caused by a drained water tanked in the city that was caused by a water main break. Westfield’s Director of Public works David Billips told 22News the water main break happened Wednesday, below the northwest water main tank. Due to its location, it made it difficult for crews to isolate and fix, but he anticipates the water pressure to be back to normal by Monday.
The ongoing water problems forced Westfield State to cancel their open house that was planned for Saturday and students and staff were asked to conserve water as much as possible.
22News is following this story. We will have a LIVE report on 22News at 10 on your CW-Springfield and at 11 on 22News.