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BHS to remove ceiling tiles in ten classrooms containing asbestos

Asbestos has been found in ceiling tiles in some BHS classrooms

Ceiling tiles in ten primary classrooms at the Bermuda High School for Girls have been found to contain between five and 12 percent asbestos and will be removed later this year.

The discovery was made when preparing for an air-conditioning upgrade and work was immediately suspended.

The schools said that Dr Kent Simmons, Asbestos Consultant, Bermuda Water Consultants Ltd, was called in for an inspection and testing and the suspect tiles were tested overseas for analysis.

“Further inspection identified the same tiles in ten Primary classrooms. Air quality samples were taken in the affected rooms, and all were returned as clear,” said a spokesperson.

“A further inspection of the school has also taken place and no other areas of concern were identified. The School is working closely with the Department of Health and Dr. Simmons and is following all requirements and guidelines.”

BHS is now hiring contractors to complete the abatement work beginning the first week of July when students and teachers are not using the classrooms. It is anticipated that the work will take about six weeks.

The rooms will be prepared by removing anything that is mobile and, once the tiles are removed, will be deep cleaned before the new tiles are installed and once the new tiles are in place, air quality samples will be taken again and sent overseas for analysis.

The results will take two to three days and will be communicated to parents in writing, the school said.

Head of School, Linda Parker, said in an email to parents: “We have been assured that as long as the tiles remain in place, there is no danger to the students and teachers in the affected rooms, and it is completely safe to wait until the School is closed for the Summer to undertake the abatement.

“We also understand the importance of maintaining a normal routine for the girls and providing as little disruption to the term. With this plan, we will be able to keep them safe and in school.”

Staff and parents were notified yesterday.

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Published February 24, 2021 at 8:30 am (Updated February 24, 2021 at 8:31 am)

BHS to remove ceiling tiles in ten classrooms containing asbestos

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