THE SIDELINES : Gator Toilet Bowls Kept Flushing

From Times Wire Services

A work crew was assigned to do nothing on Christmas weekend but flush the 503 toilets at the Gator Bowl to prevent a freeze-up at the stadium before the annual New Year’s college football game.

A freeze in 1983 caused about $400,000 damage in broken water pipes, so when record cold headed for town last week, officials hired a crack brigade of toilet flushers to keep water moving through the plumbing.

From dusk Friday until noon on Christmas, the 23-member crew flushed toilets. Each person was responsible for an average of 21.8 toilets.

Everything went fine until a power outage shut down stadium water pumps on Saturday and Sunday. The stadium sustained about $5,000 damage to plumbing.


“When the pumps weren’t working and the water pressure was bad, there wasn’t much you could do,” sports complex manager Richard Fagan said.