People displaced by a broken sprinkler pipe at the county-owned Evergreen Community skilled nursing facility may be waiting weeks before they can return to their rooms.
County and insurance officials are still estimating dollar amount of the damage done by a break in the system at 1:15 a.m. June 14, said Brad Reinhardt, Johnson County facilities manager. Although the broken pipe in the ceiling was relatively small, he said, water running onto the floors caused considerable flooding in the corridors and kitchenettes, damaging carpet, drywall and cabinetry.
As a result, 72 of the facility’s 112 residents had to be moved to other care facilities. Most went to Royal Terrace Nursing and Rehabilitation Center but a few are temporarily at Villa St. Francis. Both those buildings are in Olathe. The flooding affected 38 of about 60 rooms at Evergreen. Most residents live in double rooms, Reinhardt said.
Fixing the damage to cabinets in the kitchenettes could take as many as 12 weeks. Evergreen Community has kitchenettes in some parts of the building to supplement its central kitchen. Reinhardt said officials are working on a temporary solution to get residents back into the building.
The residents will return gradually, with the first group of about 25 coming back in around three to four weeks. All the displaced residents should be back at Evergreen in six to eight weeks, officials said.
The Evergreen Community at 11875 S. Sunset Drive in Olathe, was built in 1996. The pipes are original to the building, Reinhardt said, but the sprinklers have been regularly inspected and in compliance with safety codes.
The building is owned by the county and the care facility is run by the nonprofit Evergreen Living Innovations. It offers long-term skilled nursing to people who need all levels of care, said Chris Osborn, chief operating officer.
The majority of the residents at Evergreen are on Medicaid, but there are also private and third-party insurance payers, he said. Since Royal Terrace had a hallway not in use, most residents were able to move in there. To keep them surrounded by familiar faces, they’re being cared for by some Evergreen staff with supplies and equipment from Evergreen, he said.