A county office building reopened late last week after having to be temporarily closed due to an asbestos scare. Testing at the Oneida County Office building came back negative following the scare, enabling authorities to re-open the building.

The building was closed after concerns were raised following the discovery of a small amount of asbestos in the maintenance room earlier in the week. However, officials later confirmed that all testing had shown that the results had come back negative.

County Engineer Mark Larabee said: “We were unable to detect a single fiber on any samples from throughout the building.” The building had been temporarily closed with no business being conducted there until after the results had come back and the safety of the building had been confirmed.

Officials said that they had not overreacted to the discovery of unknown material in the maintenance room, stating: “We are and should be held to a higher standard of reaction when something like this happens. I would rather we air on the side of caution than the opposite.” Exposure to asbestos dust and fibers can result in a range of health problems, including the deadly asbestos related cancer known as mesothelioma.

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