Friday, May 10, 2002

Courthouse tests find no asbestos

Substance removed from top floor and attic

By Michael D. Clark,
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        HAMILTON — The Butler County Courthouse has a clean bill of health after testing turned up no evidence of potentially dangerous asbestos dust, say county officials.

        In February, just before the removal of asbestos from the courthouse's fourth floor and attic, some employees in top-floor offices expressed concern about possible exposure to the cancer-causing material.

        In response, Butler County officials offered to move workers from the fourth floor Adult Probation Department to temporary offices outside the courthouse. No workers applied for such a move, however.

        After work on the courthouse's top floors followed by extensive air testing there and throughout the building, it has been declared safe by county officials. They had maintained that their preliminary safety testing had found no cause for alarm.

        “The building is completely safe,” said Gary Yates, Butler County's director of court services.

        Mr. Yates said more than 60 courthouse employees participated in medical testing for asbestos exposure, and he has not received any reports of asbestos-related illnesses.

        “All the asbestos in the fourth floor and the attic has been removed and we tested the entire courthouse,” he said.

        Butler County Administrator Derek Conklin estimated the asbestos removal and medical testing cost the county “less than $25,000.”


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