The Flegel Center has been deemed safe by a licensed lead-safe contractor and is ready for Umpqua Community College students to move into their new home.

Douglas Moore, owner and operator of Douglas International, was hired to do industrial hygiene work on the Flegel Center, which included working with contractors as well as testing and monitoring.

Moore was contacted by general contractor Guion Randol at the request of the property owner, Sweetwater Trust. The college has a three-year contract to lease the former armory in downtown Roseburg.

Moore has been a licensed lead-safe contractor since 1992, which means he is certified in removing lead. He helped establish a plan to clean up and mitigate the lead dust found in the original sample, as well as conduct further testing.

The final samples were below the Housing and Urban Development threshold of 10 micrograms per square foot, which is the new standard set less than two years ago by the organization.

When asked if he would feel safe living in the building, Moore answered an emphatic yes. He then added, “I have a 10-year-old grandson. Hopefully, he’ll want to grow up and play baseball.”

The former armory, which was used from 1914 until 1977, will house out-of-district male students, most of whom play sports at the college.

The Oregon Military Department closed indoor firing ranges at Oregon armories in 2014 due to lead dust contamination. The Flegel Center had a firing range in the basement.

Students were originally scheduled to move in on Oct. 15, which was delayed by ongoing construction at the site as well as the testing for lead dust contamination.

According to an email from the Oregon Health Authority’s environmental health specialist, Ben Maynard, removing the lead dust particles was not required by law but was recommended.

“This recommendation is based on the fact that kids — although over the age range defining a child-occupied facility in the rule — will be using the facility,” Maynard wrote.

“This is not the first location where this type of work has been performed,” Moore said. He added that Pacific Environmental Group, the company hired to remove the lead, went above and beyond the national standards in lead abatement.

He noted they more closely followed the stricter guidelines set for asbestos abatement.

“The folks that did the work here (Pacific Environmental Group) came from the asbestos industry,” Moore said. “The asbestos has some components attached to it that are a step above in regiment to what the Oregon Health Authority requires.”

Moore said in the three areas that were treated, the floors and openings were covered with sheeting and high-efficiency particulate air devices were used constantly to trap toxins and filter the air. The walls and floors were then cleaned with a heavy-duty cleaner, trisodium phosphate, several times.

The areas were regulated, the workers inside the building were lead trained under the Environment Protection Agency’s lead renovation, repair and painting rule guidelines, and there were two supervisors on staff that were trained through the Oregon Health Authority.

“Rather than handling it like a painting project, where you’d scrape everything loose and sweep it up by the end of the day, all the waste accumulated was containerized as soon as it was generated,” Moore said.

A previous press release sent out by the college mentioned that lead dust had been found in two small storage rooms, which had been deemed as non-living quarters.

Moore said traces of lead were found in the gymnasium during additional sampling.

“The gymnasium was the largest of the areas where work took place,” Moore said. “The other spaces were relatively contained.”

Moore said it was his professional opinion that the lead dust throughout the building came from lead paint.

UCC Athletic Director Craig Jackson confirmed that students will be able to move into the Flegel Center in downtown Roseburg by Dec. 1.

“We’re building some furniture, getting rooms set up, doing carpet cleaning, moving appliances in, connecting those sorts of things,” Randol said. “We’re just trying to clean up and aesthetics sort of things.”

Sanne Godfrey can be reached at sgodfrey@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4203. Follow her on Twitter @sannegodfrey.

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