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Huntington Beach Schools Suspend Asbestos Removal Effort In Response To Complaints

HUNTINGTON BEACH ( — School officials in Huntington Beach have halted an asbestos abatement project after hearing complaints from parents and a vocal school board member.

KNX 1070's Mike Landa reports the modernization program at 11 schools in the Ocean View School District (OVSD) includes a district-wide effort to remove asbestos from the campuses.

Huntington Beach Schools Suspend Asbestos Removal Effort In Response To Complaints

School board member John Briscoe filed an official complaint with CAL/OSHA for possible asbestos handling violations citing what he calls evidence of ceiling tiles being "disturbed, moved, removed and even missing" during the modernization effort, which includes restroom renovations, fire alarm upgrades, and roofing work.

According to the school district's website, OVSD began the multi-million-dollar project in July on all of its campuses: Circle View, College View, Golden View, Hope View, Lake View, Mesa View, Oak View, Spring View, Star View, Sun View, and Vista View.

A notice posted on the OVSD website states the following: "As of September 17, 2014 Asbestos Abatement has been put on hold at ALL sites until further notice."

The notice also states the district has inspected each campus "regularly as required to be sure that the remaining [asbestos containing materials] is not disturbed."

Briscoe said he's outraged because a project that was supposed to be completed in the summer before kids were in class is continuing into late September.

"Our district administration and the contractor decided to do asbestos abatement in the middle of the day, with kids walking around and parents walking around," he said. "Supposedly all safe, but still it's certainly tone-deaf and insensitive in my opinion."

The issue is expected to be discussed at the next school board meeting on Oct. 7.

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