Erupting urinal soaks House press gallery

Carlos Caetano/Shutterstock.com

A big splash occurred on Monday morning at the House Press Gallery in the U.S. Capitol.

No, this wasn’t one of those unexpected guest appearances for celebrities to talk to reporters about some favorite cause.

This splash came from an exploding urinal. More specifically, something suddenly broke in the piping of the third-floor urinal, and water began spewing from beneath the men’s room door.

As the water flowed, it first surrounded the Associated Press’s working area, then spread toward both ends of the gallery, which was occupied by fewer than usual reporters and staffers, because the House is out of session until Tuesday.

Capitol Police officers, gallery staff, and other U.S. Capitol personnel moved to contain the flow. In doing so, they found a use, finally, for the gallery's stacks of unread newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals, as makeshift sponges and sandbags.

Employees from the Architect of the Capitol and other Capitol staffers managed to eventually stop the geyser. In came vacuums to suck up the water, and a section of the gallery carpeting was taken up – leaving behind a sticky floor.

New carpeting is to be installed in the early morning on Tuesday.

Some concern remained that water may have seeped through the floor toward the Speaker’s Gallery on the second floor, next to the House Chamber. That was still being checked on Monday afternoon.

(Image via Carlos Caetano /Shutterstock.com)

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Cyber Risk Report: Cybercrime Trends from 2016

    In our first half 2016 cyber trends report, SurfWatch Labs threat intelligence analysts noted one key theme – the interconnected nature of cybercrime – and the second half of the year saw organizations continuing to struggle with that reality. The number of potential cyber threats, the pool of already compromised information, and the ease of finding increasingly sophisticated cybercriminal tools continued to snowball throughout the year.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • GBC Issue Brief: The Future of 9-1-1

    A Look Into the Next Generation of Emergency Services

    Download
  • GBC Survey Report: Securing the Perimeters

    A candid survey on cybersecurity in state and local governments

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download
  • eBook: State & Local Cybersecurity

    CenturyLink is committed to helping state and local governments meet their cybersecurity challenges. Towards that end, CenturyLink commissioned a study from the Government Business Council that looked at the perceptions, attitudes and experiences of state and local leaders around the cybersecurity issue. The results were surprising in a number of ways. Learn more about their findings and the ways in which state and local governments can combat cybersecurity threats with this eBook.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.