Storm Threatens Art At C.M. Russell Museum
On Tuesday night, a major storm in Great Falls caused a deluge at the CM Russell Museum. After three inches of rain fell in half an hour, an old drainage pipe on the roof of the museum failed, and water started flooding into the exhibition galleries.
Luckily, an alarm went off in time. First responders acted quickly to protect the museum collection of more than 13,000 objects. None were damaged.
Executive director Michael Duchemin said staff smoothly executed the emergency plan they had prepared but had never needed to use before.
“There’s a real silver lining today. The response from the museum team has been as extraordinary as the storm itself in making sure that we get it taken care of quickly and professionally. ”
Duchemin says that the repairs to the pipes have been made and he is confident a flood won’t happen again.
The CM Russell Museum plans to re-open next Tuesday at the latest, once gallery spaces have been dried out and cleaned.
Duchemin says the museum is looking for ways to offset the unanticipated costs related to the storm.