Joint Emergency Response Team Assembled Followed Detection Of Asbestos Material

Seskéhkó:wa / September 24, 2015

TERRITORY OF AKWESASNE —–The Mohawk Council of Akwesasne and the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe are providing notification to residents about the detection of asbestos material on a property that spans the northern and southern portion of Akwesasne. Due to the location, a Joint Emergency Response Team has been assembled to investigate and report on material located at Lot #7 in Kana:takon (St. Regis) and extends into Lot #360 in the southern portion of the community.
The material has been contained and the incident is currently being investigated with the assistance of environmental, emergency measures/planning and health technicians from both organizations. The group’s findings and recommendations will be shared as they become available. In the meantime, the following information is being offered:
•        Approximately fifteen ago, a Kana:takon property owner accepted land fill. The origin of the fill and trucking company used to transport the material are not known at this time.
•        The land fill was placed in one pile and remained on the property undisturbed.
•        Two months ago, a local contractor was hired to spread the fill; which is comprised of soil, gravel and stones. The work revealed piping containing a suspicious substance.
•        The property owner notified MCA Kana:takon Chief Steve Thomas (Public Safety and Environment Portfolio Holder) about the discovery, who requested MCA’s Emergency Response Team to investigate.
•        Safety measures were taken, with MCA’s Environmental Health Officer submitting a sample of the material to Pinchin Ltd. Laboratory for analysis. Plastic was placed over the material, anchored with sand bags, and the area was taped off with caution tape.
•        On September 18, 2015 the laboratory results indicated the presence of non-friable asbestos material, which CANNOT be reduced to powder and NOT easily dispersed.
•        A Joint Emergency Response Team was assembled to investigate the incident; comprised of MCA’s Emergency Measures, Environment and Health and SRMT’s Emergency Planning and Environment Division.
The Joint Emergency Response Team is continuing to monitor the location and is conducting a complete investigation. At this time, there is minimal environmental and public safety risk.
More information will be provided as it becomes available.

For more information:
Sarah Diabo, Emergency Planning Manager                                                       
Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe
Tel: (518) 358-2272 ext.2230

Regina Jacobs, Emergency Measures Officer
Mohawk Council of Akwesasne
Tel: (613) 575-2250 ext.1030