BEND, OR -- The Deschutes County Health Services main building remains closed for air quality testing. Facilities Director Lee Randall says he was installing a new fire alarm system with a carbon monoxide detector, and it seemed not to be working properly, "We got inconsistent results that caused us to want to just dig a little bit deeper, see what the source of those inconsistent readings might be." He says if it's not actually carbon monoxide, it could be a wiring problem or, perhaps, a faulty sensor, "Those are the kinds of things we're trying to narrow down and chase down, and those could be explanations, potentially."
The building closed Sunday, and the county called in an air quality testing company to take samples. Initially, Randall says, officials thought it would reopen Thursday, but decided more work was needed, "Testing, so far this week, is going very well. The few extra days give us the opportunity to have a completely separate stand-alone system that can read and sample air samples over time, and that gives us a much better data set to be able to analyze and provide comparison." He tells KBND News, "Really, we're just erring on the side of caution so that we could have a better understanding of what the system may or may not be reading. We want to make sure that the building is safe for staff and for the public."
He expects testing will be finished Friday, at which time decisions will be made about possible repairs and reopening the clinic. The closure only affects the NE Courtney Drive location. Clients with appointments at that facility are being contacted and rescheduled. The same building was closed a month ago after employees reported strong natural gas odors.