The Washington Monument is leaking. After the 5.8 magnitude earthquake that hit the North East last week, the National Parks Service reported that there were a few cracks in the historic landmark. The NPS now thinks that the damage is more extensive, as it has found water on the bottom of the monument.
Politico reports that the Washington Monument suffered four big cracks after the earthquake last week. A four inch break on the face and three other large cracks on the walls.
A backer rod was installed last Friday to keep water out of the monument, but restoration crews discovered water inside the Washington Monument after the storm.
Carol Johnson, a Park Service spokeswoman for the National Mall and Memorial Parks, said that there are probably more cracks in the monument than previously believed. Johnson told NBC:
“The hurricane pointed out cracks and leaks that we didn’t know about. Either you couldn’t see them or we just didn’t have time to look at the whole thing.
“The monument always gets a little bit of water, but this was more water than usual, so we assume that it is from the earthquake.”
The NPS is currently searching for more cracks and will issue a report next week. The Washington Monument is currently closed. Johnson said it was possible that the Monument would open while it was being repaired, but she couldn’t give a timeline.
“They said it’s possible it could be opened up while they do some repair work, but as for timeline, I have no idea.”
The Washington Monument leak is not a good sign for the 150-year-old structure, but engineers assured the NPS that the monument was still structurally sound.