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Asbestos-Laced Philly HS to Reopen in 2025

A $20 million asbestos abatement project will allow students to return to Frankford High School in 2025, although a risk of asbestos poisoning remains.

Since asbestos was found in the Oxford Avenue building in April 2023, students at the Philadelphia high school have been displaced. First, they learned online, then a plan was put in place to have 10th to 12th graders learn in a new part of the building sealed off from the rest of the building, while 9th graders attended Roberto Clemente Middle School.

Now the whole building will be ready to go for the 2025-26 school year, the School District of Philadelphia announced Tuesday, June 12, 2024. The school district is pouring $19.9 million into the 108-year-old building to get students and staff back to an "improved learning environment."

The district admits that some asbestos-containing materials will remain in the building. "Though much of the asbestos-containing materials in Frankford will be removed or enclosed during this project, some asbestos-containing material will remain in the building," the district said.

Asbestos Poisoning Injuries

Children are especially vulnerable to mesothelioma and other asbestos exposure injuries. Furthermore, childhood poisoning often causes additional diagnosis problems later in life.

Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive form of lung cancer. The unique toxic properties of asbestos fibers cause tumors to form in the mesothelium, a thick membrane that separates the heart and lungs.

These tumors often grow undetected for decades, mostly because these victims show no cancer symptoms, such as trouble breathing and persistent dry cough, for at least 50 years. Then, they suddenly spread aggressively. Therefore, when doctors diagnose the illness, the cancer has usually reached Stage III or Stage IV, at which point it is basically untreatable.

Mesothelioma is especially difficult to diagnose in a 60-something person who has no apparent connection to the asbestos industry. Without that telltale sign, doctors often ascribe the aforementioned symptoms to COPD or another medical condition.

Asbestos directly and indirectly increases the risk of mesothelioma and other forms of cancer. The fibers alter cell DNA, causing tumors to form. Furthermore, these particles increase the production of free radical particles, which are associated with a higher cancer risk.

So, if your doctor says you have cancer and cannot conclusively link it to a lifestyle or genetic risk, an asbestos-exposure lawyer should at least evaluate your case.

Asbestosis is a lung disease. Asbestos fibers burn lung tissues. The resulting scar tissue builds up and eventually closes lung airways, many of which are not much wider than the tip of a pencil. This disease is treatable, but the treatment usually includes a radical lung transplant. As a result, the cure may be worse than the disease, which is saying quite a bit, considering the horrible effects of asbestosis.

The Abatement Process

At the Throneberry Law Group, we are committed to upholding the legal and financial rights of asbestos poisoning victims. However, these individuals are not the only victims of the decades-long asbestos cover-up.

For many years, builders lied about the risks of asbestos to buyers like school districts in Pennsylvania. So, these buyers, like the individuals who handled asbestos insulation and other products, did not know the possible liability issues.

These issues have come front and center recently since the Supreme Court has gutted the “bare metal” defense. This defense protected property owners from asbestos poisoning liability lawsuits. Now, these people, like the victims who handled asbestos, are completely exposed to danger.

The abatement process, which may become mandatory if the EPA’s asbestos ban holds up in court, is a time-consuming and expensive process. It is also a necessary process if property owners want to avoid legal liability issues and protect visitors.

This process usually begins with an air quality test. If the test shows an asbestos level above 0.1 fibers per cubic centimeter, the homeowner usually must proceed to the next step. If the air quality sample is lower, further abatement is currently optional.

A certified contractor goes into the walls and painstakingly removes all asbestos, usually replacing it with a safe alternative, like vermiculite. Then, since asbestos is a hazardous substance, the contractor must dispose of it in accordance with strict laws.

Count on a Dedicated Asbestos Exposure Lawyer

Mesothelioma victims need and deserve significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced nationwide mesothelioma lawyer, contact the Throneberry Law Group. The sooner you reach out to us, the sooner we start working for you.

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You are the reason my mother was able to cope with losing a loved one. You and your staff are always helpful and go above and beyond to help. You have been great to my family and especially my mother. My mother would always come out of your office with a peace of mind. R.S.
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We are so appreciative of the results Michael Throneberry got for us! Michael Throneberry and the attorneys we worked with were focused on our peace of mind and seemed to care for my family and me as if we were family. They truly get it. We were thrilled with the result and would recommend this firm to anyone. M.S.
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During one of my family's darkest and trying times, Michael Throneberry was there to provide help. His personal experience with mesothelioma made certain that he advised us like family. Thank you, you are wonderful. Do yourself a favor and let him help you during this trying time. He is a true 10 on a scale of 1 to 10. T.S.
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Michael Throneberry gave me a whole new outlook on attorneys'! A very caring person who was more concerned with my health than a case. Truly unexpected! He explained possible conditions in english and even found the right doctors in my area. Prepared me for the right questions to ask the doctors so that I can understand my illness better. A great person and a great human being! Thank you. Greg