Mark Gillman/ Roundup
UPDATE (3:31 p.m.): According to Joel Stone, a supervising manager at the Steven E. Schofield Aquatic Center, additional electrical problems will delay the reopening of the diving pool until next week.
The initial filter failure has been resolved.
Stone expects repairs to begin on July 30.
UPDATE (9:38 p.m.): Repairs on the pool were made today, and the facility is set to reopen to the public on July 26.
It’s roughly noon on an absolutely picture perfect Tuesday at Pierce College and the pool-side bleachers within the Steven E. Schofield Aquatic Center are packed with kids as the pool is currently under repair.
John Vowels, an experienced pool manager of 47 years, nine of which have been spent at Pierce, is set to retire at the end of the month. Unfortunately for him, he will be departing under a yellow cloud in the shape of caution tape that surrounds the bigger and more popular of the college’s two pools.
“A bearing or a propeller broke and caused the machine to breakdown as if it were an old car,” Vowels said. “We’re bringing in a crane to drop a new filter into place sometime later in the week. Not exactly a part you go to buy at Home Depot.”
Money is the main culprit here as the school has invested the majority of its funds into fixing up the surrounding pool-side area.
“We got a face-lift when we needed a bypass,” Vowels said.
Kids who grow up around a pool looks forward to the summertime and their first trip to a pool.
“The children love jumping off the high-dive and playing in the pool,” Pierce lifeguard Sara Soleymani said while manning the tower above an empty pool. “The other pool is just too small to accommodate everybody.”
Soleymani, a three year lifeguard and current nursing major at Pierce isn’t the only one outspoken about the mess within the pool gates. Day camp counselors who are in charge of these kids aren’t too thrilled with what has transpired.
“Everyone is getting tired of sitting out in this heat waiting around for their turn to get in the pool,” current CSUN student Haley Smith said.
“It’s making it harder to keep track of all of the children,” Loyola Marymount student Lauren Ballisteros said. “Hopefully it opens up by the end of the week like we were told earlier.”
The kids will ultimately be allowed back in the pool sooner than later, and according to them, it’s too hot to be swimming in shifts.
“This isn’t a blame issue,” Vowels said. “The filter just died of old age.”
Due to equipment failure, the main pool has been under repair while the Wellness Pool has been the sole pool for swimmers. (Victor Stephen Kamont)
Crew installs a new pool pump at he Steven E. Schofield Aquatic Center on July 22. (Victor Stephen Kamont)