Fort Wayne, Indiana – It believed that $300,000 in damage to a former ice skating rink undergoing a $1.9 million renovation project to transform it into a community center was done by a single member of the sciuridae family IE a squirrel as in rodent as in tree climbing rat. The community center will feature an indoor track, soccer court with astro turf, basketball court, and other offerings to people of all ages. However, the furry nuisance managed to infiltrate the building and work its way into the newly installed electrical system powering three commercial grade air conditioners along with the boiler system. All of the systems were new. As luck would have it, the rodent provoked a power surge which fried it and the expensive air conditioners. The boiler system was damaged, but not rendered a complete loss. The total estimate of the damage inflicted by the squirrel: $300,000.

If there is a God in heaven, this incident will serve as a testament to his sense of humor as the incident took place on April Fool’s Day. It should be noted that the community center has a June 7 deadline in order to meet its scheduled grand opening. Once the cause of the damage was determined, the insurer paid the claim, but the policy had a hefty $50,000 deductible. The community center belongs to the Parks Department and it is they who will have to eat the $50,000 cost of the deductible. The ice skating rink had shuttered its doors back in 2009. The total cost of the purchase and renovation has been $4.5 million. A rush delivery has been submitted to get the new HVAC systems installed as soon as possible. The renovator still believes the deadline will be met, squirrels be damned.

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