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Niagara County employees advised of asbestos at site

by jmaloni


Tue, Jun 16th 2015 09:25 am

Testing detects no airborne fibers or particulates

Niagara County Manager Jeffrey M. Glatz issued a memorandum Monday to county employees working at a county site, which preliminary tests indicate may have non-airborne, non-particulate asbestos, to ensure employees are informed and included in the investigation process.

The memorandum was issued after state employee-safety and health testing indicated the absence of airborne fibers and particles at the site, which houses the county's health and mental health departments. Investigators did detect the probable presence of asbestos insulating materials in a Dumpster located outside the building; however, those materials were not airborne. The Dumpster has been covered and secured and is set for proper removal by a licensed asbestos contractor, per guidelines set by the Asbestos Control Bureau of the New York State Department of Labor.

Glatz's memorandum reads as follows:

"The New York State Department of Labor Public Employee Safety and Health Division ("PESH"), and its Asbestos Control Bureau ("ACB") are investigating a complaint regarding the Shaw Building basement / crawl space. The County is working with PESH to address any and all concerns. In the meantime, the area in question remains locked with restricted access.

"Preliminary verbal reports from PESH of their testing results indicate no airborne asbestos fibers and particles in public and employee areas. Additional air testing has been conducted as recently as Thursday, June 11, 2015. The nature of the contents of dumpsters outside the building and their proper disposal is being tested and reviewed by the ACB and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. The County is complying with regulations to have a licensed asbestos contractor conduct a complete assessment and survey of the space. We are awaiting the complete and final written report with further guidance and recommendations from PESH. As soon as we have formal results, we will provide further updates.

"It is important in matters such as this, that we focus on facts as they are known and documented, rather than unsubstantiated media reports or rumors, as we provide critical services to the public in this County location.

"Please cooperate with government investigators, if asked.

"Thank you."

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