Recently, myrecordjournal.com reported that a Connecticut school closed following storm damage to asbestos-containing roof and floor tiles. Our Chicago asbestos lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm warn those affected by Hurricane Sandy of the potential health hazards from damage to asbestos-containing materials.
In addition to cutting off the power supply, causing floods, and taking lives, Hurricane Sandy unleashed additional danger to public health by negatively impacting roofing, insulation and other forms of construction materials. These compromised materials may contain dangerous microscopic asbestos fibers, which are known to cause mesothelioma and severe lung disease.
The Sheehan, Connecticut school did not have classes for two days after the winds tore off a huge portion of the school’s roof and let water into the building. A letter to parents by the superintendent stated that mending of the roof was almost complete and that the building was drying up. However, leaks resulted in damage to asbestos floor tiles on the second floor.
Certified contractors carried out abatement under the supervision of environmental advisers to make certain that all directives of the state of Connecticut as well as those of the EPA were properly followed. In accordance with the post-damage plan, analytical and visual testing was slated to be carried out. Students were not permitted into the building while the abatement was in progress.
In a related asbestos case, a news release from the EPA earlier this year revealed that an Illinois man was sentenced to 10 years in prison for Clean Air Act infringement related to asbestos. A federal jury convicted the 59-year-old of the unlawful removal, handling and discarding of asbestos from an Illinois building.
A jury concluded that for the purpose of boosting his profits, the accused knowingly ignored federal environmental laws of proper asbestos disposal. The sentence was reportedly the result of the man’s blatant indifference towards his workers, the environment, and the public in exposing them to hazardous airborne asbestos fibers. The accused was ordered to pay $47,086 compensation and a fine of $15,000 to the EPA.
In the course of the trial, the government provided proof that a building
owner hired the accused to get rid of insulation that contained asbestos
from the building’s piping. It was proven that neither the accused
nor his company had the required training to carry out the asbestos removal
work. Further, the accused agreed to remove the asbestos insulation for
a sum that was significantly less than the amount which a trained asbestos
abatement contractor would have charged.
The evidence further proved violation of various stipulations associated with EPA regulations and the Clean Air Act. The breaches include failure to guarantee sufficient wetting of the asbestos insulation in the process of it being stripped, failure to suitably inform the EPA, not keeping trained representatives onsite, and failure to mark the vehicles used to transport the asbestos-containing waste.
If you suspect that your child or family member may have suffered asbestos exposure, take them for a medical examination and contact a mesothelioma attorney immediately .