Marion County cleaning up mold at fire station

Back in October 2018, firefighter Shawn Beam showed FOX 35/FOX 51 around Marion County Fire Station 17, pointing out the mold growing throughout the station’s attic.

“This is the attic space. It’s above the living quarters,” said Beam. “If you get down, you can see underneath all the stuff growing under.”

He said the mold was making him sick, at the time telling us, “I’m a firefighter, so I’m already going to have a shorter lifespan than most people. I don’t want this to make it even shorter.”

At the same time, a county spokesperson told us, “This is not mold that’s dangerous to anyone’s health.”

But now there’s some good news for the firefighters here.

‘I’m just glad it’s done, glad it’s done,” Beam said.

The county voted this week to move more than $70,000 from the reserves to clean the building and repair the attic. Of that money, $38,000 is set to go toward mold abatement.

“I feel good. I’m glad these guys are going to have a safe station to work at. That’s all I wanted in the first place,” said Beam.

All this comes after Beam’s attorneys met with the county. His attorneys temporarily stopped the county from working on the building, so they could test it for mold, which they found. The county told FOX 35 in an email:

"One of our organization’s highest priorities is the overall health and safety of our employees. We are relieved the interruption to fulfilling our promise of a healthy and safe working environment is no longer a barrier to completing this project.”

It's a win for Shawn Beam and the rest of the firefighters who come in and out of Fire Station 17.

“Thank you. You made all this possible. I think with all of it, in take, it’s going to make this station better and better for the community.”