|Updated: 2/22/2012 5:38 pm
||Published: 2/22/2012 3:36 pm
NORTH LITTLE ROCK, AR - The Environmental Protection Agency says a North Little Rock park will be asbestos free by Thursday afternoon. They say the asbestos came from an old processing plant located nearby that used contaminated materials for decades.
"If he's wearing a white suit and we're wearing no suits, I think that's a problem," said Robert Wells who lives near Conley Park and stopped to watch the clean-up crew.
The men in the white hazmat suits are local contractors hired by the E.P.A. to clean-up the park. They say they're about 24 hours from finishing the job.
"We have a clearly marked grid here," pointed out Mike McAteer of the E.P.A. "They're excavating."
Here's how it works: first, the contractors dig up all of the dirt across the contaminated area, making sure to keep it wet the whole time.
"We want zero dust coming off the facility while we're cleaning it up," explained McAteer.
Then they line a truck with plastic and fill it with the contaminated dirt.
Said McAteer, "we refer to it as burrito wrapping. It's literally tied up across the top."
Once full, the trucks head to a landfill where all of the dirt will be buried. When the last truck filled with dirt leaves the park, the E.P.A. says it'll be safe for everyone, including children.
We relayed that message to Wells who has kids of his own. His reply: "well I tell you what, we'll bring their children out here and let them play for a while and then we'll find out how safe it is, won't we?"
The other locations contaminated with asbestos include the old processing plant and two homes south of the plant. The E.P.A. says they're working with the owners of those buildings to figure out who will pay for those clean-up processes.