Oregon DEQ issues asbestos exposure violation fines!

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality issued asbestos penalty.

Portland,OR(JusticeNewsFlash.com)–The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) fined commercial property owners for allowing unlicensed workers to perform an asbestos abatement project in a building they own. Commercial building owners, Timothy John Fitzpatrick and Kelli Ellena Fitzpatrick, were only fined $1,000 for potentially releasing toxic asbestos fibers into the air and exposing workers, consumers, area residents to the known cancer causing agent.

The Albany building owners hired unlicensed workers for their asbestos abatement construction project. The salvage and demolition consisted of laborers removing friable asbestos-containing sheet vinyl from the building. Asbestos is an air contaminant, and ruled by the federal government to have no known safe level of exposure. Asbestos containing products are a respiratory hazard proven to cause lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis.

The construction demolition workers also failed to properly package and label the asbestos-containing waste material generated by the project, and the owners allowed the workers to dispose a portion of the waste into an open dumpster. The open accumulation of the asbestos waste is an additional violation of Oregon’s environmental laws. An Oregon-licensed asbestos abatement contractor is required by state and federal laws to handle asbestos-containing materials in a specific way so asbestos fibers are not released. Oregon rules require only specially trained and licensed contractors perform friable asbestos abatement projects.

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