Most cleanup work complete at YHS

The large part of the cleaning Youngsville High School is winding down.

Servpro has moved its trucks and more than a million dollars worth of equipment out.

The half-dozen specialized trucks used to lift workers to the ceiling of the gymnasium are back in Lancaster, Pa., where they started.

Instead of 92 people working at the site, on Wednesday, there were no more than five.

Removing the bulk of the corrosive ammonium phosphate powder that was spread throughout the school by vandals on June 16, was the key, and probably most expensive part of the job. The estimate for Servpro’s work is still $449,000, according to Boyd Freeborough, Warren County School District quality assurance manager.

“We are on hold until some of this other work is completed,” Servpro East Erie and Warren Counties Owner Kevin Patterson said Wednesday.

The company is expecting to do a final wipe-down of all the horizontal surfaces in the building once the ventilation system has been cleaned. Patterson said a crew of about five will handle that job.

Servpro cleaned all of the floor-mounted ventilation equipment, but the rest of the equipment will be handled under a separate contract.

On Wednesday, Lab Director Pat Vargo and Dick Valesky of Free-Col Labs of Meadville were in the building swabbing samples at various points to check Servpro’s work.They marked off and swabbed 10-by-10 centimeter squares on walls, floors, shelves, even inside lockers.

Those swabs were put in marked bottles to be analyzed by an independent laboratory.

Each sample will be checked for ammonium phosphate, the active ingredient in the fire extinguishers. “That’s all we’re looking for because that’s all that was in there,” Vargo said.

The testing is intended to make sure Servpro did its job thoroughly and the students and staff of the school do not encounter the material.

“We try and find it,” Vargo said. “If we do, then he (Patterson) comes back and cleans it more.”

“We don’t want (students and staff) at any risk,” he said.

“I want to give the people here, the community, the parents, peace of mind that this job was done properly,” Patterson said.

The results of the testing will be back in about a week, Vargo said.

Free-Col will also be involved in testing the air inside the building once the ventilation system has been cleaned. “We’ll come back out and we’ll do air samples,” Vargo said.

That’s one of several more jobs to be done. District officials know there are more expenses on the way: the evaluation and cleaning of electronics in the damage areas, the cleaning of the ventilation system, and the recertification of the fire alarm system.

The company that will handle the evaluation and cleaning of computers and other electrical devices could be on site next week. An initial estimate on equipment restoration, not including equipment that was deemed total loss, was $238,000.

The fire alarm system recertification is expected to cost $5,000 to $10,000.

Estimates for cleaning the ducts and ventilation range up to $20,000.

Some additional work has been added to the tab.

Clothing from basketball uniforms to choir robes that was not secured in bags will be dry cleaned.

“The adjuster asked Servpro and the district to contact our sports equipment restoration company,” Freeborough said.

Those people will come in to see if the powder from the extinguishers could have infiltrated small holes in the padding inside football helmets, cracks in mats, and similar crevices, and evaluate what would need to be done.

The school’s elevator will also be checked.