KENAI (AP) -- Asbestos has been found at Seward High School when students helped remove an old platform in the wrestling room.
The discovery last week has closed the wrestling room, portions of the north gym and the swimming pool and locker room area. School officials say those areas will remain off limits until samples collected after the area was cleaned last weekend show no asbestos particles -- or minimum acceptable levels -- in the air.
Asbestos is composed of threadlike fibers known to cause lung disease and cancer when inhaled. The material was widely used in various types of building materials because of its resistance to fire and chemicals.
After the find, the wrestling room was sealed off and the students instructed to shower and wash their clothes separately from other laundry even before test results showed the presence of the carcinogenic substance in broken platform tiles, said Malcolm McBride, the school district's maintenance contracts coordinator.
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