Asbestos in Schools — College Edition 11 Feb 2009

In PLATTSBURGH, NY, asbestos discovered in the Maintenance and Storage Building of Plattsburgh State University of New York has brought the demolition of the building to a halt. The building was being torn down to allow for a new parking lot at the school when, in November 2008, workers found non-friable asbestos.
The situation is being assessed for time and cost. Once decisions are made on these matters, the school will follow the proper procedures for asbestos abatement and removal from the structure. Until then, the Maintenance and Storage Building remains closed off to people by a chain link fence and asbestos warning signs. In ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY, at the Memorial Union an asbestos awareness seminar occurred on January 14, 2009.

The Memorial Union building had in 2006 itself been a site of asbestos contamination. The seminar at Memorial Union was the second of a five-series set paid for by ASU that resulted as a portion of a $87,000 settlement ASU made with Maricopa County Air Quality Department for 11 air quality violations the school made in 2006. In 2006, ASU failed to notify Maricopa County that it was removing asbestos from one of its buildings. Following the incident, ASU was forced to pay 25 percent of its fine in cash, but it was allowed to create the five session public seminars to settle some of its remaining fine. The five public seminars inform attendees of how to handle asbestos should it be discovered. It closely resembles the training given to construction workers in the safe handling and disposal of asbestos-containing materials. A second asbestos violation occurred at ASU in 2007 where a contractor pulled up asbestos-containing tiles after being instructed to only remove the carpeting above. The removal released some asbestos into the air, but the school was not fined for the incident.