By Brianna Guillory
After five years of complaints about the fishy smell being emitted from the halls of the 2400 building on campus, LPC’s administration has decided to take action.
Spanish faculty member Catherine Suarez’s office has been in the 2400 building for over five years. Around that same time she had noticed an odorous smell while walking through the halls. Like any other concerned faculty member she reported the smell but was met with very little response.
“I have notes to myself on my calendar that go back five years,” Suarez said when asked when she first started to report the smell. She also said that the smell has become progressively worse every year.
Suarez has made reports to Maintenance and Operations and has even reported the smell all the way up to administrators of the Chabot-Las Positas Community College District. Other faculty and staff members have made their own complaints and reports as well.
“It is gagging and disgusting,” Suarez said, “and I feel sorry for the students out in the little benches working.”
Students have experienced the smell in the halls as well. Student Arielle Garcia reports that the smell is on an occasional matter.
“Sometimes I smell it and then sometimes I don’t smell it. I feel like the more people in here the more it stinks,” Garcia said.
Suarez and other faculty members, such as ESL teacher Marilyn Marquis have reported feeling ill while inside the building. According to Marquis she gets uncontrollable allergies and sneezes up to twenty times in one sequence while in the building and nowhere else.
“I keep Claritin in my office so that I can go teach,” Marquis said, “It’s this wild sneezing fit. And then you get that out of your system. But only after I leave.”
Suarez herself has reported suffering from migraines because of the stench. Because of Suarez report she was even offered resources from human resources and was provided with workman’s compensation forms.
This eventually led to Suarez doing her own research and finding her own answers.
Marquis has questions about the process of the repairs.
“One of the historic problems on this campus,” Marquis said, “is that the administration doesn’t do anything until they are forced to do something.”
“Because I am so tired of this,” she said, “I actually sat down one day and for the whole day I researched what can cause fish smell in construction. And I actually found that there’s a certain chemical reaction that can take place in light fixtures.”
Suarez took the information that she found and sent it to her dean, Don Miller. Maintenance and Operations was informed as well.
“They checked light sockets, and they actually found which one that had a fish smell,” Suarez said. However, that information was not disclosed
Mold was also found in the 2400 building and was sent to an outside facility for analysis. The results of those tests have not yet been reported either.
Student Ashleigh Maciel felt uneasy at the thought of mold in the building.
“Are they going to fix it? What if we all die?” she said.
According to Miller the results should be back to the school within a few days, when Maintenance and Operations plans to take immediate action.