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Breathe Easy: New Castle Asbestos Cleanup Project Complete

A three-month EPA effort to clean up asbestos at an old Firestone brake pad factory yielded 6,000 tons of contaminated material.

NEW CASTLE, Ind. -- South 25th Street in New Castle is a little bit cleaner--and a little bit safer--thanks to the Environmental Protection Agency.

A three-month project to clean up asbestos at the site of an old Firestone brake pad factory wrapped up last week. The Courier-Times newspaper says EPA workers removed about 6,000 tons of asbestos-contaminated material.

Asbestos was commonly used in automotive products during the 1970s, when the factory was operational. Firestone vacated the property at the end of the decade and several other tenants came and went. 

A fire destroyed the factory in 2012, but 22 piles of "asbestos-contaminated rubble" remained. The EPA project has removed those rubble piles, for good.

“If it wasn’t for the EPA this wouldn’t have been possible,” Mayor Greg York told The Courier-Times. “The EPA lived up to everything they said they would do.”  

According to The Courier-Times, the property is "zoned for heavy industrial use and has a viable railroad line running through it". Mayor York told the paper that bringing a new factory to the site is "high on his priority list". 

(Photo by bermau/Thinkstock.)

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