February 16, 2010

Pax drown-rat-ish

It rained here today. One of those "once in a decade" deludes of water hammering down from the sky.

So much rain in fact that the visitors carpark of my Government Department building flooded. It's on Basement level 1.  The Library (where I work in the technical area) is directly below it on Basement level 2.

Let's show you all in pictures

The car park after the flood water drained downwards

The technical work area - not my desk thankfully!.  More of the plaster ceiling tiles caved in shortly after I took these photos. All our electricals and computer links run through the ceiling - eek!
By time we evacuated the water was beginning to leak through the roof the entire front length of the library, soaking the floors. The book shelves/stacks/compactus are 1 metre to the left of the green coloum - we had no chance of securing any of them as the fears of electrocution were motivating our evac.

Ten minutes into the deluge of water the ceiling panels caved in. In the library we know we've lost at least two computers; a stack of books and journals.  We won't know till tomorrow if the central book stacks have been drenched (they are located more centrally so they may have escaped).  We know that the I.T (computer boffins) next door to us are equally drenched so the damages could be in the hundreds of thousands or more. (photo of the passageway above is between the two sections)

We were evacuated not long after that - via the central stairs and down to the basement 3 carpark (reinforced concrete ceilings down there plus there's the back door so we could run for it if the cry of TSUNAMI was made).  The side escape stairs had to be abandoned due to the lovely waterfall effects happening in them - and the central stairs had slow trickles making the footing precarious.

Forty minutes later we were told to basically bugger off home - and they'll call us tomorrow if we can't get access and need to stay home.  Since we're having a serious heat wave (with 84%+ humidity from the after-rain steam) I'd really much rather be at work in airconditioned loveliness [oh - plus I'm still covering my direct bosses job and she's going to be peeved to discover I'm about 70 emails behind on her mail checking... my cunning plan to clear that up today/tomorrow is not going so well]

Hmm.. maybe *now* they'll authorise my request to attend the inter-state Library Disaster Recovery conference - could be worth the application at least!


  1. Library Disaster Recovery or any office with computer access should have a disaster plan. It usually takes something like this to put a plan into effect. I was on my back in the day.

    You want air - go to a movie or a mall.

  2. About 20 years ago, my first-ever muster for state active-duty (U.S. National Guards answer to their state governors unless called up for federal/national service) was to help sandbag around the municipal city hall in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. It is a wonderful building, and comprises Veterans Memorial Coliseum. It is also located on a small island, in the middle of a river. A river that was flooding. And the records library was located in the basement ...

    I hope you and your colleagues fare better than we did, and recover quickly ...

  3. We might have that in a month or two, after everything starts to thaw...