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After fire and asbestos fears, lots remain vacant

One year after a tragic fire in Corinth, New York ravaged the local economy, the community has failed to bounce back. Now, local officials and residents are concerned about what the future may hold. Around this time last year, a fire consumed three area businesses situated in downtown Corinth, all of which operated out of buildings that were over one century old. It took seven months to clean up the fire debris and suspected asbestos contamination from the area.

Asbestos removal is needed after fires in older buildings in order to protect people from exposure to airborne asbestos particulate matter. Inhaling or ingesting these fibers of asbestos, even if accidentally, can prove to be lethal later in life. Asbestos exposure is conclusively linked to the development of mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer that often affects the lungs, as well as other parts of the body.

Mesothelioma affects less than 3,000 Americans each year, and while there are palliative treatment methods available, including chemo, there is no known cure. The disease typically lies dormant for up to fifty years before an individual begins to suffer from mesothelioma symptoms.

To date, there are no plans to rebuild on the lots where the stores once stood, and the local economy has become stagnant. "Sales have died," said Sher Millis, founder of the Adirondack Artists’ Studio on Main Street.

Village Mayor Brad Winslow added, "It’s been frustrating for me. We’re optimistic the properties are going to get rebuilt, but it’s been a long, hard process."

"There is nothing here, so they don’t stop any more," said Shirley G., 50, a local artisan.

"We have to support the village," Millis told local reporters. "We are committed to changing the energy here."

Distribution channels: Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals Industry