Last updated: August 7, 2023
Note: DEQ is no longer involved in this response. Prologis is voluntarily managing the cleanup of private properties. See information below.
Any questions about debris cleanup can be directed to Prologis at firstname.lastname@example.org or 503-276-7389.
See current update or scroll down the page.
Date of incident: July 19, 2023
Location: 12350 NE Sandy Blvd., Portland
Product: Ash and debris
Unified Command: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, Portland Bureau of Emergency Management, Prologis (the building lessee)
How to safely dispose of ash and debris
Español: Có mo eliminar la ceniza y los residuos con seguridad
IMPORTANTE: No barra o utilice una aspiradora o una lavadora a presión para limpiar los residuos. Hacerlo podría provocar que el asbesto se rompiera en partículas más pequeñas.Mira este video.Lleve guantes de un solo uso.Lleve la mejor mascarilla que tenga – se prefiere la N95.Remoje los residuos con cuidado.Recoja los residuos con guantes y una toalla de papel húmeda, y póngalos en una bolsa de basura.Ponga la bolsa en una segunda bolsa de basura, tire la mascarilla y los guantes, átela arriba y póngala en el bote de basura. Lávese las manos, los brazos, la cara y su ropa cuando haya terminado. O reporte los residuos para que Prologis los limpie en ordeq.org/KmartFire
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral. It is often found at low levels in some soils. Asbestos was used widely in building materials throughout the last century. In people with long-term exposure, it has been found to cause cancer and lung-related health issues. Most people are exposed to some asbestos over the course of their lives and very few have any health problems because of it.
EPA and DEQ published an interactive map showing results of air and debris samples collected in nearby neighborhoods shortly after the fire at the former Kmart in northeast Portland. To date, no asbestos has been detected in any of the debris and air samples confirmed by EPA.
Guidance on how to safely clean up fire debris from last week’s former Kmart building fire remains the same, although no asbestos has been detected in samples taken by EPA and DEQ. The guidance outlines standard procedures that protect people from any type of ash and debris, which can be harmful to people’s health.
Anyone who is not comfortable or unable to clean up the Kmart fire debris on their own can report the debris to Prologis via an online form. Prologis is the building lessee and is providing assistance with cleaning up debris on private property. Any questions about this debris cleanup can be directed to Prologis at email@example.com or 503-276-7389.
Sampling of fire debris and air NE Portland neighborhood by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency indicates no confirmed detections of asbestos in 16 air samples and 11 debris samples.
Agencies have created a map that identifies the debris sampling area. It is based on EPA-contracted environmental scientists walking the area beginning on Friday, July 21, and recording where they visually observed fire debris. Some debris may not have been observed and recorded as public employees are not permitted to enter private property. This first map will be updated as more details on sampling, testing, and results are confirmed.
Thank you to everyone who participated in today’s community meeting to discuss the response and cleanup after the Kmart fire last week. If you weren’t able to make it, you can watch the Zoom recording of the community meeting, with passcode: ku&Q3k0?
Hybrid community meeting: Join us to discuss the status of the response, public health advice, and how to safely cleanup your own property. Supplies (masks, gloves, trash bags) available, if needed.
Where: Parkrose School District, 10636 NE Prescott St., Portland
When: Sunday, July 23, at 2 p.m.
Oregon DEQ, U.S. EPA, Portland Bureau of Emergency Management, Multnomah County, Oregon Health Authority, and additional Portland agencies continued ash and debris cleanup on Saturday in the aftermath of the fire at a former Kmart building in Northeast Portland, with the city of Portland re-opening a park and environmental officials testing air and debris samples.
Luuwit View Park and Thompson Park are now open. The community garden in Luuwit View Park remains closed for now. Knott and John Luby Parks are still closed as cleanup continues.
State environmental and health officials also have published instructions on how to safely clean or remove the debris from homes and yards–see frequently asked questions. Those who are concerned about doing their own cleanup can report debris to Oregon DEQ.
EPA contractors monitored air quality and collected fire debris to test for asbestos in northeast Portland. Pictures 1 and 2 above are air sampling; pictures 3 and 4 are debris collection.
July 21, 10:30 p.m.
Recording of July 21 media availability (via Zoom) Passcode: #V$68Bwt
July 20, 9:30 p.m.
The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality is working with the Oregon Health Authority, Environmental Protection Agency, Portland Bureau of Emergency Management, Multnomah County, and additional Portland agencies to investigate the spread of debris and ash across the Parkrose neighborhood in Northeast Portland as a result of a large fire on July 19. State, federal and community partners share concerns about protecting the public health of those who live, work, and play nearby.
Charred pieces and heavy dust from the fire at a vacant Kmart building at 12350 NE Sandy Blvd. were found in area yards and on Parkrose School District property. Debris at Luuwit View Park has already been tested and identified as containing asbestos.
All City of Portland activities planned for the park have been canceled for tomorrow and the School District has notified administrators to keep all activities indoors. The city of Portland contracted with the Professional Minority Group to clean up the park and work began this afternoon.
DEQ will conduct an area assessment tomorrow, July 21, to better understand the spread of the contamination and next steps in the cleanup process.
Information on this site is considered to be accurate at the time of posting but is subject to change as new information becomes available.
- Susan C. Mills, DEQ public affairs specialist, firstname.lastname@example.org, 503-956-9648
- Harry Esteve, DEQ communications manager, email@example.com, 503-951-3856