ASBESTOS FOLSOM SCHOOL
Asbestos hazard abated at new Folsom, Calif., elementary school site.
July 20, 2010 – In 2006, the Folsom Cordova Unified School District planned
to build a new elementary school at 375 Dry Creek Road, Folsom, Calif.,
originally called the Empire Ranch Elementary School and later renamed the
Russell Ranch Elementary School.
However, the school district’s plans for a new elementary school were temporarily halted when elevated levels of naturally occurring asbestos were found in the soil across the entire 10-acre site of undeveloped land.
When naturally occurring asbestos was found on the site, the state’s Department of Toxic Substances Control required the school district to submit a plan designed to minimize the release of airborne asbestos fibers from the soil during construction.
Community concerns over Folsom school asbestos
Construction activities can release toxic asbestos fibers into the air creating a serious health hazard for workers and residents. Inhalation of airborne asbestos fibers is the primary pathway for asbestos exposure, widely recognized today to cause fatal asbestos-related diseases, including asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.
Microscopic asbestos fibers can be released into the air when rock is broken or crushed, or when the asbestos-tainted soil is disturbed. This can happen when bulldozers and tractors are at work.
Asbestos detected at Folsom school site
According to the state’s Air Quality Management District, asbestos fibers occur naturally in the soil in 44 of California's 58 counties, including Folsom’s Sacramento County.
To ensure that the site provided a safe environment for construction workers, and later the students, faculty, and staff, the asbestos abatement plan was acted upon and school building construction proceeded to completion.
Today there is a new elementary school, with 25 classrooms for approximately 600 students, that is easily accessible to the families moving into the new Prairie Ranch community in Folsom.
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