Metal wire mystery solved

They have been called notebook spirals or even stretched out paper clips. Students and faculty have noticed these mysterious objects scattered throughout campus during the last few weeks and many have questioned their meaning.

The wires are roughly eight inches long and as thin as pencil lead. While most are a dull metallic grey, many can be found rusting from the recent weather. They can be found nearly anywhere on campus, most often along sidewalks.

Several students noticed that the wires have only started appearing since the start of the semester and are likely tied to the cold, snow or ice.

Some students, such as Mike Knuth, a sophomore communications major, and Sarah Delgatto, a sophomore early childhood education major, thought the wires looked like pipe cleaners or a spring from a pen or mechanical pencil.

Ashley Balcerzak, a junior secondary education major, said the wires may have come from a salt truck.

This is close.

Justin Perry, the superintendent of grounds, confirmed the wires are actually bristles from the snow removal systems used on campus.

They are normally part of a broom attachment that is used to clear snow.

“There are plastic bristles and metal bristles,” Perry said. “Every once in a while a metal one will fall off, sometimes a plastic one will too.”

Perry explained this broom attachment is connected to what is normally a mower, but during the winter, the mowing deck is removed for the brush.

He also said while the bristles have never been a problem, grounds staff does clean them up when they pick up litter.

Seth Schroeder can be reached at 581-2812

or [email protected]