The Lawrence Public Library director reported today that the majority of the children's books damaged by rainwater leakage Wednesday are beyond re-use.
Director Wayne Mayo said 187 books and 59 periodicals were deemed unusable by the library's staff because of curled pages. He estimated the damage to the books from $3,500 to $4,000, but said the figure could change.
"Unfortunately, a lot of the books were out of print," Mayo said. "I don't know if we will be able to get them back."
About 200 books incurred water damage, which was blamed on drains clogged by gravel during a reroofing project at the library. An effort to dry the books using fans proved mainly unsuccessful.
Mayo said the roofing work began about a week and a half ago to repair hail damage at the library, 707 Vt. The city of Lawrence contracted with Industrial Roofing, a Lee's Summit, Mo., company, to do the work. The project may be completed today, he said.
The library's loss was not covered by insurance, Mayo said. His next step is to talk with city officials about the contractor's insurance as a means to recoup the damages.