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An Edmonds, Washington, asbestos removal contractor has been cited by the Washington Department of Labor & Industries for multiple willful safety violations for improper handling of asbestos.
Above & Beyond Asbestos Removal L.L.C., which is now under review for its multiple willful violations and could be decertified as an asbestos contractor, is facing fines totaling $229,700 after two separate inspections determined the company had put workers and the public in danger, the department announced Tuesday.
One worksite inspection involved the emergency removal of boiler insulation in a Seattle apartment complex, and the other concerned the removal of asbestos popcorn ceiling material in a single-family residence. In both cases, inspectors found that workers did not use proper safety equipment, that required air sampling was not performed, and asbestos-containing material was left exposed to the public and was improperly transported through public areas, according to a press statement.
“This company has demonstrated a continuous indifference to Washington’s asbestos handling rules which protect workers and the public from harm,” Anne Soiza, the department’s assistant director for the Division of Occupational Safety and Health, said in the press statement. “This fine delivers a clear message that asbestos is a deadly hazard and we won’t tolerate any company that doesn’t follow the rules to keep the public and workers safe.”
Asbestos can cause potentially fatal diseases like asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung cancer and only a certified abatement contractor that follows specific asbestos-related safety and health rules may remove and dispose of asbestos-containing building materials in Washington, according to the statement.
An official at Above & Beyond did not wish to comment Tuesday regarding the citations.
U.S. workplace safety regulators have cited a Florida commercial bakery for exposing employees to caught-in, fall and electrical hazards and proposed penalties of $67,261.