A state of emergency has been declared due to a fire in a hangar at Marine Corps Air Station Tustin
A local emergency has been declared in Orange County due to a fire at a historic Marine Corps Air Station hangar in Tustin on Tuesday, Nov. 7.
After firefighters successfully extinguished a fire at a Tustin school on Nov. 4, another emergency on Tuesday, Nov. 7, shook up the community. Its causes are currently unknown.
After the fire, the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) immediately collected and analyzed air and ash samples. According to the tests, asbestos was found in the samples, as well as heavy metals. Specifically, lead, arsenic, and nickel.
That's why the Orange County Board of Supervisors has declared a local emergency. They say it's to help ensure adequate resources are available to rebuild after the fire.
As of today, it is known that public schools and parks in the City of Tustin are closed. Also, according to Superintendent Mark Johnson, all preschools will be closed as well. A car show for Veterans Day that was planned for the weekend has been canceled. In addition, the county Board of Supervisors will hold a special meeting on Monday, Nov. 13, to consider ratification of the emergency declaration.
At the same time, residents are advised to be cautious in areas where asbestos is found or suspected.
By the way, asbestos is a group of natural minerals that have a fibrous structure. It has been widely used in industry because of its unique properties such as fire resistance, thermal insulation and mechanical strength. However, asbestos is also recognized as a carcinogen and its use has been restricted or banned in many countries. When inhaled, it can increase the risk of lung disease or cancer. And if ingested, it can damage the mucous membranes of the stomach or intestines.
To minimize asbestos exposure, experts recommend:
- do not touch fire debris/ ashes
- wear protective equipment (mask/gloves) if you are in an area with a high risk of contact with asbestos
- take off your shoes before entering the house
- keep windows closed on windy days to prevent asbestos exposure
- spraying the patio with water instead of sweeping it.
- avoid using leaf blowers
- wash ashes off vehicles, street toys or street furniture
- to wash ashes off pets.
If you have questions - call the hotline available to residents at 714-628-7085. Or look for more information on this website.
Image: FlynntheProtogen – CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED/Wikimedia Commons