The county recorder maintains that despite the accident, the records are safe.
By STEPHEN SIFF
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
WARREN -- A broken sump pump caused water to back up on the floor of a records room in the sub-basement of the Trumbull County Administrative Building.
None of the records, which include deeds and mortgages dating to the early 1800s, was damaged, said Diana Marchese, county recorder.
"I'm very concerned and very upset that we had this problem, but I'm sure that it will not happen on a regular basis," she said.
The room, a former boiler room, was converted to hold bound paper records when the county administrative building was remodeled earlier this year. A $13,000 heating and cooling unit was installed to keep the temperature and humidity in the records room at ideal levels to preserve books.
Top priority: "They are safe, and this is our No. 1 priority to make sure the records are safe and accessible," Marchese said.
In the basement room, the records will not be exposed to damage from sunlight and also will be well protected from fire or tornado, she said.
The documents previously had been kept in the recorder's office on the first floor of the building, but the space was vacated when a new restroom was built, she said.
Pump failed: The problem Monday occurred when gardeners watered around the outside of the building after the sump pump failed, Marchese said. County workers with vacuums removed the water within a few hours after it was first noticed and the sump pump has been fixed, she said.
The county's oldest property records, which date to the 1790s, are still stored in a basement room in the Stone Building.
Marchese said she is waiting to make sure the water problem is solved before moving these records to the administrative building.