Walsenburg Asbestos Site

 
Site Contact:
Todd DeGarmo
OSC

(degarmo.todd@epa.gov)

Site Location:
116 Walsen Ave
Walsenburg, CO 91089
response.epa.gov/walsenburg_asbestos_site

In August 2018, the City of Walsenburg condemned the residential structure located on Walsen Avenue, Walsenburg, Huerfano County, Colorado (the Site). In September 2018, the structure burned, and portions of the building collapsed. The structure is in a state of severe disrepair due to weathering, a collapsing roof, and missing walls and windows. In March 2019, the City of Walsenburg conducted an evaluation of the Site and determined that the burned structure contained friable asbestos.

On August 3, 2020, the City of Walsenburg and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) contacted the EPA Region 8 Response Program requesting assistance in performing a removal action at the Site. The City of Walsenburg provided the EPA with sampling data, where asbestos (chrysotile) concentrations were measured at concentrations as high as 6 percent.

Based on the OSC’s evaluation of the crumbling building materials and the missing walls and windows, there has been a release of friable asbestos to the environment from the ACM at the Site. The property is in a residential neighborhood with other residences located in close proximity. There are continued incidents of trespassing and adequate barriers are not in place to prevent children or other persons from accessing the Site.  The hazardous materials inspector documented a couple of incidences evidence of trespassing and vandalism in August 2018.

Weather events including wind, rain, and snow will continue to degrade the remaining portions of the structure. This will cause asbestos fibers to continue to be released from the ACM as the material weathers and become friable due to ongoing exposure to the elements. Hence, asbestos fibers may migrate off-Site and pose an asbestos inhalation threat to nearby residents and community members.


For additional information, visit the Notices section.