EPA overseeing demolition of dilapidated factory to protect against asbestos exposure

26 Sep 2016 by under News

asbestos warning 100x100 EPA overseeing demolition of dilapidated factory to protect against asbestos exposureA former Arkell and Smiths Sack Co. facility in Canajoharie, N.Y., has been targeted for demolition and asbestos removal by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA has likely announced the removal efforts due to the high risk associated with asbestos exposure in relation to various diseases, including one of the deadliest cancers known – . The structures on the site are dilapidated and collapsing.

“At the request of the local government, the EPA sent staff and federal resources to stop the potential release of asbestos,” said EPA Regional Administrator Judith A. Enck in an EPA press release. “EPA will make sure that the buildings are taken down properly and that asbestos is not spread into the community.”

Unlike most exposure-related diseases, any exposure to asbestos may lead to the development of asbestos-related diseases, mostly due to the small size of asbestos particles and their ability to travel into the human body. One of the most dangerous forms of cancer, mesothelioma, is caused by asbestos exposure and can affect the lining of the lungs, abdomen, and in rare cases, the heart. There is no known cure for mesothelioma.

In February, the EPA visited the building to take debris samples after being notified in November 2015 by Major Francis Avery that its dilapidated condition posed certain safety hazards. It was determined shortly after testing the samples that asbestos within the building’s structures may spread beyond the property to homes located within just 30 feet of the facility.

In order to prevent incidents such as this from occurring, demolished buildings and asbestos-containing materials will either be removed and secured at the site or properly disposed of at permitted facilities. The air surrounding the asbestos-laden site will also be monitored throughout the removal process to ensure that the asbestos has not spread.

The original Arkell and Smiths Sack Co. facility was built in the 1860s and sits on a 2.6-acre site with seven interconnected buildings making up approximately 65,000 square feet. In 2007, the property was sold and fell into a state of disrepair.

Source: Insurance Journal


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