Asbestos-fighting tactics sought for DRDC repairs, roof replacement

Elizabeth Howell
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Public Works is seeking offers to deal with asbestos while doing general repairs and roof replacement of a Defence Research and Development Canada building located in Shirley's Bay.

(File photo)

At least one worker in Building 24 had been complaining of headaches "and other adverse health effects", which she blamed on the "interior environment of the building," stated an assessment performed by InAIR Environmental Ltd and posted on Merx, a procurement site used by the federal government.

"There have been recent concerns about the potential for mould growth in certain locations in this building. In particular, there has been water intrusion along the rear interior wall of the building," the assessment stated.

A September 2006 InAIR probe for microbes found mould, bacteria and "low levels" of spores on the rear wall of the building, the assessment added. Some of the species were toxic.

The site visit, which took place on a rainy day, revealed water pooling at the foundation and leaking into the building.

"There was no flashing on the side of the roof to direct the rain water to a gutter and leader system. No gutter existed at the roof line," the assessment stated.

"A thorough building inspection and additonal testing for mould at other locations in the building should be pursued to provide a clearer picture of the indoor air quality situation in the building."

A probe of the rest of the building was scheduled and later cancelled by the Communications Research Centre, which owns the campus.

The winning proponent for the roof replacement will need to exercise "maximum precautions" for dealing with the asbestos in the building, which is found in interior pipes, vinyl floor tiles and window caulkings.

The contractor must select "an asbestos and mould abatement subcontractor" to remove the asbestos found, the documents stated.

Portions of the work site must be performed at negative pressure, a tactic used to keep asbestos particles from leaching into the rest of the area. There will also be a decontamination and shower area for employees, who will wear respirators while performing the work.

The age of the building was not disclosed in the documents. Use of the Shirley's Bay site dates back to the 1950s, according to DRDC's website.

Offers for the $233,500 project are due Dec. 13.

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