Issues at Bend Area schools

By Mindy Kearns - Special to the Register

BEND AREA — Mason County schools in the Bend Area had a rough start on Tuesday, as one was dismissed for having no water, and the other evacuated due to a burning smell.

New Haven Elementary School students were sent back to their homes at around 9:30 a.m., after water was shut off due to the ongoing town water project.

According to New Haven Recorder Roberta Hysell, workers hit a main water line on Rt. 62. Water was off for a little over two hours before being restored.

NHES Principal Walter Raynes said upon notification that the water was going to be off for at least two hours, he called the school superintendent and the decision was made to close the school. Raynes said it is very hard to tell students, especially the younger ones, that they can’t use the restroom facilities for that long. Also, lunchtime begins at 11 a.m. at the school.

Hysell said residents can stay updated on water outages and boil water advisories by going to the town website at

The site is updated immediately as to any issues, she said. Also, notifications will be sent out on the Code Red system by Mason County Emergency Management Director Dennis Zimmerman. Hysell urged residents to sign up for Code Red notifications.

Meanwhile, at 9:42 a.m., the county 911 center received a call from Wahama High School, stating there was an odor of something burning or hot within the school, according to Mason Volunteer Fire Department Chief C.R. Blake.

Blake said firemen were on the scene within minutes, and found the school had already been evacuated of all students and staff. Because of the daytime hours causing low manpower, Blake said both New Haven and Pomeroy departments were called in to assist at the school.

He said the school was completely searched, and firefighters found a computer in one of the classrooms had malfunctioned and overheated. Blake said there was no fire, and no other damage was incurred.

Students returned to their classes to complete the remainder of the day.

By Mindy Kearns

Special to the Register

Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at

Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at