A day after air quality regulators ordered “strict containment measures” be put in place for asbestos-wrapped steam pipes that were disturbed at Roosevelt High School in Boyle Heights the LAUSD said the students, staff and community are safe.
Asbestos materials were identified and mitigated before demolition began for Roosevelt High School’s comprehensive Modernization Project in early October, the LBUSD claimed in a statement provided by spokeswoman Elvia Perez.
The pipe with asbestos material was discovered with a non-accessible ceiling cavity between the second and third floor, the LAUSD said. Construction activity immediately was stopped.
“Based on dust mitigation measures already in place, the quick action to encapsulate the asbestos material and because the construction area has been completely segregated from the rest of the campus, the safety of our students, staff and the community continues to be assured,” the district said.
The district claimed it was continuing to work with the South Coast Air Quality Management District to safely address any unforeseen asbestos material. “In the interim, ongoing air monitoring data continues to show that there has not been any migration of airborne asbestos.”
The SCAQMD ordered measures to be taken after a demolition contractor found the pipes in debris piles. The asbestos was disturbed in a campus building, according to SCAQMD.
“SCAQMD will take every step within our authority to ensure public health is protected,” said Wayne Nastri, SCAQMD’s executive officer. “We will deploy all necessary measures to contain asbestos or any other air toxics at the demolition site.”
Under SCAQMD’s orders, contractors must contain any debris piles containing asbestos, ensuring that it “is contained, fenced and signage is posted.”
The agency has also required that contractors submit a cleanup plan that, once approved, is executed according to SCAQMD rules.
Inspectors were sent to the school on Thursday and Friday to monitor the situation.
The agency had previously responded to a complaint at the site on Oct. 10, but no violations were found, officials said.