Price tag for asbestos cleanup at New York school topping $4 million

19 Dec 2013 by under News

Calvin Coolidge school Price tag for asbestos cleanup at New York school topping $4 millionThe discovery of dangerous levels of at a New York elementary school in August led official to shut down the building, relocate students and teachers, and begin a large-scale asbestos abatement program. The price tag for clean-up efforts is expected to top $4 million.

As this blog reported in August, more than 200 people were likely exposed to asbestos at in Binghamton, N.Y., after inspectors found what they thought was asbestos in a basement crawl space during a routine inspection. Students, teachers, administrators and others were in the building for summer school programs when air samples revealed higher than acceptable levels of asbestos.

Asbestos exposure may lead to the development of respiratory illnesses such as asbestosis, a severe scarring of the lungs, or mesothelioma, a rare and deadly form of cancer. Mesothelioma affects the lining of the lungs or abdomen, or, rarely, the heart. There is no known cure for mesothelioma.

The school was built in 1950, when asbestos was still commonly used in building products for insulation and fire protection. It was not until the 1970s that asbestos was largely banned from use in construction, but it can be found in some products in structures built as late as the mid-1980s.

The $4 million price tag includes the cost of cleaning up the asbestos, as well as replacing materials and equipment lost during the process. The school was re-opened to teachers, students and staff on Dec. 2, at which time teachers found that a lot of their materials had been thrown away. The final estimate for the cleanup will not be known until teachers determine what additional supplies they need to purchase.

Funding for the asbestos cleanup at Calvin Coolidge will come from the state Education Department as well as the school district’s general fund or emergency contingency funds.


Comments are closed.