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Fire & Smoke Testing Services

Category Press Release
Publish Date 12/19/2023
Author Paul Cochrane
Title California Hangar Fire Results in Emergency Declaration Due to Asbestos, Lead and Other Exposure Hazards
Introduction LA Testing offers environmental, industrial hygiene and material testing services, sampling supplies, test kits and personal protective equipment (PPE) to identify and mitigate exposure risks to hazardous substances.

Huntington Beach, CA, December 19, 2023

Last month, Orange County officials declared a local emergency following a large fire at a hangar in Tustin, California. The World War 2 era hangar was built of wood and had been designated a Historical Landmark, but was sadly destroyed in a massive fire that spewed smoke and ash throughout the area.


The South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) warned residents that it had collected and analyzed air and ash samples following the fire that indicated the presence of asbestos, lead, arsenic and nickel. Potential exposure hazards were concerning enough that all schools in the Tustin Unified School District were temporarily closed, as were preschools, daycare centers and multiple parks.


In response, local authorities urged residents to:

  • Avoid touching or disturbing the materials unless they have been properly trained to do so??
  • Avoid touching fire debris/ash?
  • Wear protective equipment (mask/gloves) if in an area where there is high risk of encountering asbestos?
  • Remove shoes before entering a home?
  • Keep windows closed on windy days to keep asbestos out?
  • Spray patios with water instead of sweeping them
  • Avoid using leaf blowers??
  • Wash off ash from vehicles or outdoor toys or furniture?
  • Wash ash off pets?


“Following a building or structure fire that contains asbestos, lead or other dangerous materials, people need to be aware of the hazards that may be left behind and spread over a considerable area,” said Michael Chapman, Laboratory Manager at LA Testing’s Huntington Beach facility. “Fire departments, health officials and the public can turn to the material, environmental and industrial hygiene testing experts at LA Testing for answers. Our laboratories offer testing services for asbestos, lead, smoke residues, gases, particulate matter, chemicals and even microbial hazards. We also provide sampling supplies, easy-to-use test kits, air monitoring instruments and PPE - including respirators and respirator fit testing supplies.”


To learn more about this or other environmental, health and safety testing resources, please visit, email or call (800) 755-1794. For access to environmental test kits, visit

About LA Testing

LA Testing is California’s leading laboratory for environmental and indoor air quality testing of asbestos, mold, bacteria, lead, VOCs, formaldehyde, soot, char, ash and smoke damage, particulates and other chemicals. In addition, LA Testing offers a full range of air sampling and investigative equipment to professionals and the general public. LA Testing maintains an extensive list of accreditations including: AIHA LAP LLC., AIHA ELLAP, AIHA EMLAP and AIHA IHLAP, CDC ELITE, NVLAP, State of California, State of Hawaii Department of Health and other states. LA Testing, along with the EMSL Analytical, Inc. network, has multiple laboratories throughout California including South Pasadena, Huntington Beach, San Leandro and San Diego.

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