Asbestos Removal Begins at Downtown Princeton Hospital Site

medical centerA contractor has started to remove asbestos from the inside of the hospital buildings on Witherspoon Street in downtown Princeton, town officials confirmed today.

The asbestos is double bagged and stored in a secure storage area inside hospital prior to being loaded into special sealed containers and transported offsite for proper disposal, officials said. One container has been removed from the site so far. Officials said the work is expected to take another two months.

Evidence of a discharge was observed when two 6,000-gallon heating oil tanks located between the hospital and the parking garage were removed. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection was notified about the discharge. Soil that absorbed the discharge will be removed from the site and disposed of at a DEP approved facility, officials said.

The Yannuzzi Corporation, the company that is doing the asbestos removal work, is also removing items from inside the buildings that are being prepared for recycling or disposal, including carpeting, ceiling tiles, light fixtures, pipe coverings, copper water piping, electrical wiring, and office partitions. Officials said the work will take another two weeks to complete.

Eisco Environmental has been removing the underground fuel storage tanks at the site and the work will probably be finished by the end of the week. No petroleum contamination had been found in connection with the removal of the tanks so far, officials said.

The site continues to be monitored on a regular basis by representatives of Whitman Environmental and town officials. Representatives from the state Department of Labor continue to visit the site. Workers are properly certified for the work that they are performing and have been observed to be following proper safety protocols, officials said.

Demolition work has not been authorized yet, officials said.