Work underway to assess Fries Theatre water damage

Published: Dec. 28, 2022 at 4:41 PM EST
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FRIES, Va. (WDBJ) - A burst water pipe in the Fries Theatre’s ceiling left a pool of water in the theatre Monday.

By the time the water line break had been discovered Monday evening, there were already a few inches of standing water in the theatre.

“The sprinkler burst with the cold weather and poured water down into this area, flooded this floor, water ran down into the women’s locker room and then from there, out into the hallways, in the lobbies and everywhere,” Fries Mayor Richard Farmer said.

“With a four-inch line, and a pump that can pop out 500 gallons a minute, that’s a lot of water,” Fries Theatre Volunteer Gene Adkins said.

It’s unknown when the leak first started.

“It took several years to get it to where it is now and we’ll get to that,” Adkins said. “All we have to do is just put the word out, we’ll have volunteers to come in and support. They did before and they will again.”

Farmer says a damage assessment will take place Friday, but the theatre will most likely be closed for a few months.

“The message is simple,” he said. “It’s going to be closed for a month or two. We’ll know more what that is. But it will be reopened. We will be having jam sessions here. We’re hoping in the spring.”

Farmer says around a dozen volunteers helped clear the building of standing water.

“People are interested in what this building means to the town and want to keep it,” he said. “We had several people that came and helped take take care of this problem.”