PTHS Gym Floor Information
Synthetic gym floors containing mercury have been a well-documented topic amongst New Jersey school districts over the last year. Based on this discussion, the Pemberton Township School District opted to sample the Pemberton Township High School Gym A floor on April 30, 2019. At this time the school district discovered that the original gym floor was top-coated with approximately 1/4" of material. The test results confirmed that the sample of the original gym floor did test positive for mercury.
Precision Analytical Services, Inc; who conducted the April 30, 2019 testing, recommended that the district complete air testing throughout the high school gyms. The school district held multiple internal discussions, and determined that following Precision’s recommendation was the best option at that time.
On June 19, 2019 the school district contracted with Whitman Companies, Inc to conduct air tests in the high school gyms, locker room, weight room and auxiliary gym. The results indicated that mercury vapor levels within the gymnasiums fell below the NJ Public Employees Safety and Health Act (PEOSH) permissible exposure limit (PEL) 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA) of 100 µg/m3.
Currently, the State of New Jersey has no specific recommended exposure limits for members of the general public or children in schools for exposure to mercury. Internal discussions continued; mulling recommended options of adding new cooling and ventilation to the gyms as well as removal of the synthetic gym floors.
On September 21, 2019 the school district contracted with Aqua Pro-Tech Laboratories to conduct a floor sample of the high school gym B. This gym was part of the building addition that took place at the high school during the 1990's. That test came back negative for detecting mercury.
After weighing all the options, cost included, the school district has decided to replace the synthetic gym floors in both the auxiliary gym and gym A. In addition, the school district will add a new HVAC system in high school gym A. The school district is planning on beginning these projects in February 2020, with an estimated completion of August 31, 2020.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Superintendent’s Office at 609-893-8141 ext. 1003.