Many old school buildings here in Ohio could use updates. If construction commences, the possibility of asbestos exposure could exist. For this reason, the school, the school district and construction companies need to proceed with care and issue warnings of possible exposure, especially if this toxic material is found in the building.
A school and two construction contractors in a neighboring state were recently assessed fines for not taking more precautions to limit exposure to this dangerous substance. Apparently, the school was getting air conditioning and a new heating system. For approximately six weeks, construction crews worked throughout the school.
It turns out they kicked up a lot of dust and some of it contained asbestos. Teachers, students and other staff were not warned about the danger over the course of the six weeks in which demolition was done in order to make the needed repairs and installations. In addition, the construction workers were not given the proper protective gear. The danger of exposure was not divulged, and employees were given no training regarding how to handle asbestos exposure.
It is possible that some parents at the Michigan school did not even know about the risk to their children until they received word of the proposed fines. Even though the exposure risk was reportedly low, any exposure could prove harmful to a person’s health. Most would say that no level of exposure is safe.
Now, parents will probably always have a fear in the back of their minds that their children could contract a disease connected to asbestos exposure. This incident may not be as isolated as many people would like to believe. It could happen here in Ohio or anywhere else for that matter. Many people will get lucky and not suffer any ill effects, but others may not. Those harmed by this toxic material may have legal options for pursuing restitution for their damages associated with the exposure.