Some recent news coverage has referenced rubberized gymnasium floors from the 1960s through the 1990s, which may emit mercury vapors. This being the case, our school district proactively decided to ensure the safety of students, faculty, and staff by testing the schools that have rooms with this type of rubberized flooring. I’m pleased to inform you that the official results from this comprehensive testing process are now available.
Throughout our district, 66 separate samples were obtained from seven schools, Adult Learning Center, Paul Robeson, Redshaw, Livingston, Roosevelt, Lincoln, and Lincoln Annex, that have this kind of rubberized flooring. All samples were below 0.8μg/m3 (equivalent to 800 ng/m3) as per the NJ Department of Health, with the lone exception of a Roosevelt School music room. However, this room is considered within acceptable limits because space is not occupied continually by any one individual. Currently, two teachers alternately hold classes in this space and students spend no more than three periods per week in this room. In addition, we’ve now enhanced ventilation in this music room through installation of an exhaust fan. We are continuing to monitor the music room at Roosevelt School and will replace flooring if necessary.
To further improve air quality, we have started to install ventilation fans in other spaces. These infrastructure adjustments will be small in scope, while giving everyone increased peace of mind related to overall air quality. For those who’d like additional information, here is a link to a New Jersey Department of Health fact sheet about mercury and synthetic flooring: https://www.nj.gov/health/ceohs/documents/NJDOH_mercury_flooring_guidance.pdf
If you have questions, please contact Frank LoDolce, the district’s Director of Facility Design and Construction, at (732) 745-5300, Ext. 5389.