SEOUL, Jul. 19 (Korea Bizwire) — As traces of asbestos continue to be discovered in school classrooms even after the removal of asbestos wall finishes, the government has decided to enforce stronger measures by requiring the steel frames that held the asbestos in place to be dismantled.
In addition, the government has ordered schools to cover classroom floors and walls with two layers of plastic to prevent asbestos in powdered form from escaping from the construction area.
The Ministry of Education and Ministry of Employment and Labor yesterday revealed plans to remove asbestos from classrooms at 641 schools nationwide during the summer vacation.
The classrooms will be closed off first with a double layer of plastic cover, while M-bars, light steel structural elements that once held the asbestos in place, will also be removed within the sealed area.
With the M-bar steel frames still in place, government officials said powdered asbestos attached to the frames could become airborne even after the finishing was completely removed.
As such, the government has decided to get rid of the M-bars to ensure total safety of students and teachers.
The Ministry of Education has also promised that external professionals and members of civil society will join parents to monitor the construction.
After the removal of the steel frames is complete, the next step in the process will come only after approval from the monitoring group.
H. S. Seo (firstname.lastname@example.org)