September 2, 2014

Region 4 Schools Remain Closed Thursday and Friday, Ivoryton Post Office Shut Down by Tree Damage

Tree damage to the roof of Ivoryton Post Office (photo by Jerome Wilson).

AREAWIDE— Region 4 schools will remain closed Thursday and Friday, as John Winthrop Middle School in Deep River continues to be used as an emergency shelter for residents of the district towns of Chester,Deep River and Essex.  In another development in the wake of the arrival of Hurricane Sandy Monday, the Ivoryton Post Office has been closed after a large tree fell on the building’s roof and caused extensive damage. The building is expected to remain closed for up to a month.

Superintendent of Schools Ruth Levy announced the school closing Wednesday afternoon. District schools have been closed since the arrival of the storm Monday, making for a full week of missed classes due to Hurricane Sandy. Levy said the emergency shelter at the middle school is expected top remain open through Friday.

Though some sections of Deep River and the Ivoryton section of Essex had electric power restored overnight Wednesday, large sections of Deep River, Chester, and Essex remain without electricity. Only portions of the Centerbrook section of Essex were spared outages from the storm. Levy said about 500 meals were served to residents at the middle school cafeteria Tuesday, with at least 30 people staying overnight at the shelter. Dozens more used the shower facilities at the school.

Levy said the school district is paying most of the costs of the emergency shelter in anticipation of later reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. A costumed Halloween parade was held at the middle school Wrednesday afternoon after traditional Halloween activities, such as the parade in Essex, were cancelled. The Ivoryton Post Office is closed after a large tree fell during the storm and breached the roof of the structure.

A postal employee said Wednesday the 275 boxholders at the Ivoryton facility will be able to pick up mail at the Centerbrook Post Office using there regular postal box numbers. The Ivoryton Post Office, which was built in the 1960s, is expected to remain closed for up to a month for repairs to the building’s roof.