Locker room back in use after mold problem

ESCANABA — Escanaba Area Public Schools superintendent Coby Fletcher and other school officials addressed a mold problem in the Igloo July 11th.

“We held a Building and Ground Committee meeting in the facility and determined at that point we needed to figure out what the scope of the problem was,” said Fletcher.”

Testing found elevated levels of mold inside the facility. The high school football teams and visiting teams use the locker room to get ready for games and store their gear.

“We got with people who could do the mold abatement for us. We spent 2-2 ½ weeks working on the abatement, scrubbing the air, doing everything we needed to do to get the nasty stuff out of the facility.

Everything was ripped out, from carpet to ceiling tiles. A little over a month later, the mold problem is a thing of the past.

“There’s a 100% difference,” said Fletcher. “If you go in while the (football) equipment is in there, it still smells a little bit like a locker room. The smell of mold or mildew, the unhealthy part of the smell is pretty much entirely gone. It smells like a clean facility.”

The entire cost to eradicate the mold and install new preventative measures, like dehumidifiers, came in below $20,000, which the school district had set aside.

“We actually did have funds budgeted for this type of thing,” said Fletcher. “The nice thing about it is we didn’t have to go take money from anywhere we weren’t expecting to have to take it in order to get this done.”

The renovated locker room is ready just in time for the Eskymos season opener Friday night against Alpena.