You may have noticed people in protective suits and masks working on Superior Street in recent days. Licensed contractors who specialize in asbestos abatement have been on the job, helping the city of Duluth remove century-old asbestos-lined steam pipes from beneath the street.

As for the dust associated with the work and depicted in the photo above, that's no cause for concern, according to Linda Thiry of Arrowhead Consulting and Testing. She explained that crews need to break through a concrete vault to reach the steam pipes - work that often throws up concrete dust.

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The city has offered assurances that air quality on the scene is being monitored by the contractor and the Minnesota Department of Health to ensure the pipes are removed without endangering the health of workers or passers-by.

The asbestos abatement work will continue for several more weeks.