Choctaw school crews had quite the wake-up call, after a roof blew off a middle school Physical Education building and landed on the football field.
Winds there reportedly reached upwards of 80 miles per hour. Now, the aftermath is affecting the start of football season.
“We knew we would probably wake up to damage, but this one was a little bit of a surprise for us,” said Choctaw-Nicoma Park superintendent Jim McCharen.
Mashed up metal on the gridiron is grinding game-day plans to a halt. McCharen said the damage inside could have been a lot worse, though.
“We’re lucky,” he said, “and this was a roof we put on, on top of the old roof, so it didn’t have much water in it.”
Crews spent the day planning the best way to approach restoration, assessing above the building and beneath the debris.
McCharen remarked, “These fields are pretty resilient. They can come back and spread rubber back in it, and fluff it up.”
Coaches are collaborating on upcoming games now, and plan to merge middle school and high school team at one facility.
“Logistically tweak the schedule a little bit,” explained McCharen, “and hopefully our field is not damaged too back, that we can make it maybe a couple weeks to be playing on it again.”
Little league teams also utilize the middle school field on weekends, but the superintendent told me they may have to move elsewhere as clean-up continues.
PE class will also have a new home in a different district gym. While the building is covered by insurance, the superintendent expects the district to have to pay a hefty deductible.