Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Employees Exposed to Asbestos

According to The Post-Standard, Aapex Environmental Services could be fined thousands of dollars for exposing employees to asbestos during a botched cleanup project at the former Agway building in DeWitt.

The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited Aapex for six "willful and serious" health violations and proposed fining the company $57,000. OSHA inspectors began investigating Aapex in November last year. OSHA identified several laws the company broke while doing work at the former Agway building, such as failed to monitor its employees' exposure to asbestos, falsified records, failed to perform proper air-sampling tests, failed to train employees on how to properly contain asbestos and allowed asbestos-contaminated water to leak from work areas.

According to the article, an Aapex supervisor in charge of the asbestos removal pleaded guilty last month to one felony count of conspiracy to violate the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act and Superfund law and faces up to five years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines when he is sentenced Aug. 21 in federal court.

This wasn't the first violation for Aapex, in 2002 after owners admitted to improper practices during a job at Crucible Specialty Metals, OSHA issued Aapex four serious citations and the company agreed to pay $3,087 in fines.

Have you been exposed to asbestos in the workplace and want more information? Read more on asbestos exposure.

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