Turmoil is brewing in Lexington-Richland School District Five in South Carolina, and parents aren’t happy.
Fitsnews reports that in mid-April, workers in protective gear were seen removing asbestos from Chapin High School during school hours. When a school board member called to inquire about this, she was told that no asbestos removal was taking place. However, a few days later, the school district recanted, admitting that they were indeed removing asbestos during school hours.
Asbestos-containing materials pose the smallest risk to those around them when they are undisturbed. The EPA recommends that schools attempt to minimize the disturbance of any asbestos, and stresses that removal should only be undertaken when the asbestos-containing material has been severely and extensively damaged. Removal is a last resort and should not be necessary if the asbestos is properly managed.
Compounding this parental nightmare is the fact that the removal of this material occurred during school hours and in the presence of students and faculty. As soon as the removal process began, asbestos fibers could have been scattered into the air and inhaled by students, teachers, and parent volunteers. One would think that since the workers needed protective gear for removal, it should have been realized that the material being moved could pose a danger to the members of the community studying, working, eating nearby as well.
The idea that hazardous particles could be floating around in the school’s air is horrifying to any parent or teacher. Buildings, particularly schools, that were constructed with asbestos-containing materials need to study and follow the EPA’s guidelines to minimize any possible danger.
If you or a loved one may have been exposed to asbestos, contact us today to learn more about your rights and legal options.