July thunderstorm leads to new North Tapps gymnasium

Work was underway to replace the school's aging roof on July 20 when a thunderstorm suddenly rolled through the Lake Tapps area, drenching the workers and sending rain into the gym.

The plan this summer was just to replace the roof and the bleachers at North Tapps Middle School, but Mother Nature had other ideas.

“It was a dark and stormy morning,” Dieringer Superintendent Judy Neumeier-Martinson said with a laugh.

Work was underway to replace the school’s aging roof on July 20 when a thunderstorm suddenly rolled through the Lake Tapps area, drenching the workers and sending rain into the gym.

“The water just came running in the building,” Neumeier-Martinson said.

By the time it was over, the gym floor was flooded and beginning to warp.

“Hard wood and water do not mix at all,” Neumeier-Martinson said.

Along with the floor, the ceilings, wall coverings and five classrooms were damaged to the tune of approximately $600,000.

Luckily, the rains came on a Friday when people were in the building instead of over the weekend so work began immediately on drying the building, though the floor would still have to be replaced.

“It looked awful that day,” Neumeier-Martinson said.

Insurance paid for the workers to cut out the warped section of floor and replace it with new wood and then sand down the whole gym and re-finish he floor.

All of the work was completed before schools opened and students returned to find a brand new gym.

“A bad situation ended up being resolved well,” Neumeier-Martinson said.

She said the floor was original installed when the building was built in 1993 and was scheduled to be resurfaced within a few years, though seeing the new finish reminded her how old the original floor was.

“We though it looked pretty good until we saw the new one,” she said.

More in News

Golden anniversary celebration held in former maternity home

It’s estimated more than 600 babies were born in the Mahlin Maternity Home, now known as the Le Sorelle Inn in Buckley.

Hardhats and heavy equipment continue to dot school grounds

Many students on the Plateau and in the valley have a lot to look forward to in the near future.

Tell King County what you think about the trail system

The public survey will be open through Oct. 5.

More than 1,600 drivers sited for HOV misuse | Washington State Patrol

One driver was even ticket three separate times.

Free construction classes help make community connections

Building Beyond the Walls, an Enumclaw-based non-profit, offers folks of all stripes a way to learn new skills and form long-lasting connections through volunteer work.

Black Diamond officer recognized for life-saving efforts

Suffering from sudden cardiac arrest, a Joe Moore was saved by the quick thinking of his wife and the fast response of the BDPD.

Human remains identified as those of missing Enumclaw man

Kristian Burnstad was last seen alive on Feb. 7, 2017.

Patrols to emphasize districted driving over the weekend | Washington State Patrol

Don’t contribute to the rising rate of crashes and distracted driving fatalities.

Save time by buying Mount Rainier passes online

Now you don’t have to wait in line — just print your pass and home and enjoy the majesty of the park.

Most Read