Friday, May 14, 2010

University removes asbestos from Firestone

The University began work on asbestos abatement in portions of the Social Science Reference Center in Firestone Library on April 30th, University spokeswoman Emily Aronson said in an e-mail.

The abatement work accompanies renovations to the Social Science Reference Center. The abatement is routine with any renovation process, as powdered asbestos is a known carcinogen in humans.

Solid asbestos was commonly-used as a building material from the 1940s and 1980s, and is found in many older buildings. Due to the dangers of powdered asbestos, every renovation project conducted on older buildings is accompanied by an inspection to determine whether the areas under renovation contain asbestos. When asbestos is found, abatement work precedes the renovation.

The area where abatement work is being performed is currently closed off to the public, while other parts of the Social Science Reference Center remain open. Abatement work is scheduled for the hours when Firestone Library is closed.

Aronson added that “individuals may continue to safely occupy other areas,” adding that a warning of the abatement work is “standard procedure” to prevent people from entering the area.

By Nan Hu and Randy Khalil, staff writers