West Virginia Town Concerned about Asbestos

Residents of one small West Virginia town believe that they may be experiencing exposure to asbestos caused by the demolition of an old, dilapidated glass factory.

According to an article in the Wheeling News-Register, concerned Moundsville citizens who live near the old Fostoria Glass Factory are concerned about a recent find by demolition workers who’ve been working to tear down the plant, which has sat empty for more than 20 years. Last week, demolition had to be halted due to the discovery of a large amount of asbestos on the property, which is located just a few hundred feet from several homes.

Residents say no one should have been surprised to find asbestos on the property and that the city, who now owns the property, should have checked for the presence of the toxic mineral before they began demolition.

They made glass products there, and that building’s more than 100 years old. Of course there’s going to be asbestos. Everyone knows that, she said. “What concerns me is that they did all that work before they stopped because they said they found asbestos. What were they thinking?” says Betty Kachalo, who has lived just down the street from the plant for 60 years.

The site is about 70 percent demolished, and City Manager Allen Hendershot told members of City Council demolition would not continue until all the asbestos is removed.

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