Conditions inside Southfield's city hall raise health and safety concerns

Posted at 6:27 PM, Sep 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-09 18:27:35-04

Concerns are being raised about conditions inside Southfield’s aging city hall building.

Sources tell 7 Action News employees are getting sick, and nothing was being done to fix a long list of issues.

A complaint was filed with the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration regarding exposed asbestos, mold, lead-based chipped paint and standing water.  The complaint also states employees are experiencing headaches and nausea due to the conditions.

According to sources, bed bugs were also discovered inside the treasurer’s office.

More alarming to some is a recent fire in the basement. 

“Tuesday a transformer caught fire. How does that happen?” said Pamela Gerald with the Southfield Citizen Oversight Committee.  “You are worried about economic development and you are not looking at the infrastructure at city hall.”

Due to the age of the building, the basement does not have a fire suppression system or smoke detectors.

City Administrator Fredrick Zorn tells 7 Action News cost has prohibited a fire safety system from being installed in the basement, but it is being added to the budget now. 

Zorn says renovations haven’t been done in fifty years, and at the time city hall was built, a fire suppression system wasn’t required.

Born maintains the building is safe for employees and visitors and says concerns raised in the MIOSHA complaint are being addressed.