Broken water pipe briefly closes Big 5

Quick response has store back in business next day

Brian WilkinsonFebruary 13, 2013 

An estimated 600 gallons of water from a broken pressure gauge forced the closing of Big Five Sporting Goods last Friday morning.

Assistant store manager Sam Mendez said employees arrived at the store at 6 a.m. to assist in unloading merchandise from a Big 5 delivery truck that arrives weekly from from the company's distribution center in Riverside.

While bringing merchandise into the store on a dolly at about 7 a.m., the driver of truck accidentally knocked off a pressure gage and the 1/4-inch pipe attached to the store's fire protection system.

It took between 20 and 30 minutes to get the water turned off and by that time the store's storage room and a good part of the store was flooded.

Store employees, including Mendez, John Burnett, Matt Lipe, Jordan Wright, Tino Topping and Kristy Romero, immediately began the process of sweeping and mopping water off the store's floor and carpeting. Former store employee Jake Burns, now a Big 5 manager in Fresno, also assisted with the clean-up.

A clean-up crew form Fresno arrived the next morning at 5 a.m. and the store was open and ready for business that morning.

The gun and amo department in the store was opened later that afternoon. after a clean-up and restoration crew returned at 5 a.m. Saturday, the entire store was open for business at 10 a.m.

Big 5 District Supervisor Paul Stockdale said there was minimal damage to merchandise because the majority of products are off the ground on elevated shelving.

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