ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) Freshman at Morehouse College have been packing up and trying to salvage whatever valuables they have left after a late night sprinkler malfunction caused major flooding and damage inside the historic Graves Hall.
Ceilings in the 130-year-old building collapsed as water poured from the fourth floor to the first Tuesday night around 11:20 p.m.
"The roof caved in from the water leakage," said freshman Jordy Andrade. "We went in and we’d seen it was a big impact. My brother, it messed up his laptop, his shoes, his clothes, everything. He lost everything," Andrade added.
Cedric Beal’s room was one of the worst hit. Still he was able to help his dorm mates concerned about their belongings as well.
"Some rooms are worse than others and they seem stressed, really stressed," Beal said. "I’m going to pray and let them know it will be alright, and hopefully they will be reimbursed for that stuff because it was laptops, TV, X-boxes, everything," adding that his own clothing and floors were soaked with water.
Morehouse College officials worked Wednesday to relocate more than 110 students into other housing options on campus.
"As of this afternoon, we will have about 80 percent of the students who live in Graves hall in their residential space," said Maurice Washington, the Associate Vice-President for Student Services and Dean of the College. “There are about 15 rooms and students who will definitely be impacted long-term, but they will be relocated on campus,” he added.
College officials are still trying to determine what caused the dorm room sprinkler to burst.
“We are still investigating if there was some issue with our sprinkler head and there was not smoke, there was no fire,” Washington said, adding that piping and HVAC systems are not compromised.
The school has a room set up to help students who need clothing. The Red Cross is also assisting. The school is asking that anyone who wants to donate to help the students to contact the Department of Housing and Residential Education at 404-215-2634 or 470-639-0519.
“The school is helping us out, from Dr. Turner to our brothers are out in the front helping us asking if we need any help,” Andrade said. “I really appreciate that but donations would really help.”
The students are banding together as the brothers they are taught to be hoping to finish the year out strong and with support.