Costs Increase from Asbestos Found in Buildings

In ONEIDA COUNTY, NEW YORK, the county anticipates spending $21 million to have the asbestos from just its office building removed. Asbestos is a potentially deadly material that can lead to the development of several forms of cancer such as lung cancer s and the condition known as asbestosis. Exposure to asbestos is the only known cause of mesothelioma, a deadly cancer of the lining of the lungs. According to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) guidelines, all buildings constructed before 1980 are expected to contain asbestos. This is due to the prevalence of asbestos as a building material. Asbestos had been considered a miracle product in the first three fourths of the twentieth century, when it was used in everything from roofing materials to flooring tiles and even the glue holding them down. Oneida County’s office building was opened in 1970, and it was concluded that the building contained the deadly asbestos. On November 12, 2008, the office building was closed when asbestos fibers were found near an air vent the day before. Air quality testing, though, showed no asbestos in the air, but the county is taking no risks, and it will proceed with continuing the asbestos abatement in its 10-story office building, even at the $21 million dollar price tag. In GENEVA, OHIO, the city will be facing an increase in the price of a property on East Main Street of $12,000.

This will be the added cost to remove the asbestos recently found in the building. The City of Geneva planned to purchase the building and have it demolished. The site would then be used to relieve the parking problems in the area. In order to have the building safely razed, the asbestos present in its ceiling must be properly removed. If it is not, when the building is demolished, that asbestos could become airborne and pose a hazard not only to the demolition team but also to the entire neighboring community. Inhalation of asbestos can lead to a scarring of the lungs — asbestosis — or many forms of lung cancer, all of which are potentially deadly. The city is planning to continue with the purchase of the site, but it is asking the property owner to reduce the selling price by $12,000 to reflect the cost of the asbestos removal.