As the renovation project progressed this summer at the Upper Perkiomen 4th & 5th Grade Center, there were a few building materials that were tested and confirmed as containing asbestos. These materials were identified during the demolition phase of the project. Out of an abundance of caution, demolition was stopped in the areas of concern, and environmental consultant 1Source Safety & Health, Inc. was brought in to do material sampling.
The type of asbestos that was found was “non-friable,” which means that it cannot be crumbled or pulverized and released into the air, which is when asbestos is of most concern. In the case of the 4th & 5th Grade Center, the non-friable asbestos was found in adhesives under the flooring in the auditorium, adhesives behind the wall paneling in the administration/main office area and in some floor tiles that were exposed during wall demolition. In addition to the identified asbestos, additional areas, such as the adhesive in the sound paneling in the auditorium and the former Family & Consumer Science classroom, were tested and found to contain no asbestos.
As a result of the identified asbestos, licensed contractors followed their protocols to address the building materials in question and certify all areas safe for occupancy. In the case of the auditorium floor, the materials have been encapsulated and marked according to best practices. In the main office area, the area was contained and the materials were properly removed. Follow-up air quality tests were conducted in the main office area by 1Source, and all areas that were identified to contain asbestos are safe for occupancy.