On Tuesday, September 25, Lebanon High School students were rushed out of their classrooms after a fire was discovered in a boys' bathroom on the second floor of the building. The hazard was discovered when sprinklers went off around 2:25 p.m.
The high schoolers were sent home as the investigation began. Classes were cancelled Wednesday, as the sprinklers caused significant water damage that needed to be addressed before students could return. According to The Valley News, a local news outlet, several classrooms' ceilings and a number of computers had been affected.
The school's superintendent, Gail Palaudi, told The Union Leader, "It could have been a lot worse. I really don't know what we're looking at right now for cost. The majority of the damage was water damage. We were very lucky there was not water in the server room. There was some water in the computer lab, but it only damaged four or five computers."
Lebanon police have not released the name of their suspect or what charges would be filed, but they have told newspapers that they believe the student, who is reportedly a juvenile, acted alone. Investigators initially stated that they were treating the incident as arson.
James Alexander, the New Hampshire town's police chief, told the newspaper that he believed the inquiry would "wrap up" soon. No arrests had been made as of Friday.
Students returned to the high school on September 27, after inspectors cleared the repairs and deemed the building safe. The district has not released information on the cost of the fire, but Palaudi said that administrators are awaiting an estimate from their insurer.
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